bims-mosdis Biomed News
on Mosquito distribution and disease
Issue of 2021‒07‒18
twenty papers selected by
Richard Halfpenny
Staffordshire University

  1. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2021 Jul 12. 15(7): e0009556
      BACKGROUND: The introduction of the bacterium Wolbachia (wMel strain) into Aedes aegypti mosquitoes reduces their capacity to transmit dengue and other arboviruses. Evidence of a reduction in dengue case incidence following field releases of wMel-infected Ae. aegypti has been reported previously from a cluster randomised controlled trial in Indonesia, and quasi-experimental studies in Indonesia and northern Australia.METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Following pilot releases in 2015-2016 and a period of intensive community engagement, deployments of adult wMel-infected Ae. aegypti mosquitoes were conducted in Niterói, Brazil during 2017-2019. Deployments were phased across four release zones, with a total area of 83 km2 and a residential population of approximately 373,000. A quasi-experimental design was used to evaluate the effectiveness of wMel deployments in reducing dengue, chikungunya and Zika incidence. An untreated control zone was pre-defined, which was comparable to the intervention area in historical dengue trends. The wMel intervention effect was estimated by controlled interrupted time series analysis of monthly dengue, chikungunya and Zika case notifications to the public health surveillance system before, during and after releases, from release zones and the control zone. Three years after commencement of releases, wMel introgression into local Ae. aegypti populations was heterogeneous throughout Niterói, reaching a high prevalence (>80%) in the earliest release zone, and more moderate levels (prevalence 40-70%) elsewhere. Despite this spatial heterogeneity in entomological outcomes, the wMel intervention was associated with a 69% reduction in dengue incidence (95% confidence interval 54%, 79%), a 56% reduction in chikungunya incidence (95%CI 16%, 77%) and a 37% reduction in Zika incidence (95%CI 1%, 60%), in the aggregate release area compared with the pre-defined control area. This significant intervention effect on dengue was replicated across all four release zones, and in three of four zones for chikungunya, though not in individual release zones for Zika.
    CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We demonstrate that wMel Wolbachia can be successfully introgressed into Ae. aegypti populations in a large and complex urban setting, and that a significant public health benefit from reduced incidence of Aedes-borne disease accrues even where the prevalence of wMel in local mosquito populations is moderate and spatially heterogeneous. These findings are consistent with the results of randomised and non-randomised field trials in Indonesia and northern Australia, and are supportive of the Wolbachia biocontrol method as a multivalent intervention against dengue, chikungunya and Zika.
  2. Pest Manag Sci. 2021 Jul 16.
      BACKGROUND: Mosquito larval control through the use of insecticides is the most common strategy for suppressing West Nile virus (WNV) vector populations in Connecticut (CT), United States. To evaluate the ability of larval control to reduce entomological risk metrics associated with WNV, we performed WNV surveillance and assessments of municipal larvicide application programs in Milford and Stratford, CT in 2019 and 2020. Each town treated catch basins and non-basin habitats (Milford only) with biopesticide products during both WNV transmission seasons. Adult mosquitoes were collected weekly with gravid and CO2 -baited light traps and tested for WNV; larvae and pupae were sampled weekly from basins within 500 m of trapping sites, and Culex pipiens larval mortality was determined with lab bioassays of catch basin water samples.RESULTS: Declines in 4th instar larvae and pupae were observed in catch basins up to 2-weeks post-treatment, and we detected a positive relationship between adult female Cx. pipiens collections in gravid traps and pupal abundance in basins. We also detected a significant difference in total light trap collections between the two towns. Despite these findings, Cx. pipiens adult collections and WNV mosquito infection prevalence in gravid traps were similar between towns.
    CONCLUSION: Larvicide applications reduced pupal abundance and the prevalence of host-seeking adults with no detectable impact on entomological risk metrics for WNV. Further research is needed to better determine the level of mosquito larval control required to reduce WNV transmission risk. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Keywords:  Culex pipiens complex; West Nile virus; catch basin; mosquito larval control
  3. Vector Borne Zoonotic Dis. 2021 Jul 12.
      Although the urban areas of Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire have faced recurrent outbreaks of Aedes-borne arboviruses, the seasonal dynamics of local populations of the key vector Aedes aegypti remained still underexplored for an effective vector control. The current study thus assessed the seasonal dynamics and the spatial distribution of Ae. aegypti in three neighborhoods of Abidjan city. Aedes eggs were collected using ovitraps in three different neighborhoods (Anoumambo, Bromakoté, and Petit-Bassam) during the four climatic seasons of Abidjan. Aedes egg samples were immersed into distilled water, and emerged larvae were reared until the adult stage for species morphological identification. Spatial autocorrelation was measured with the Moran's Index, and areas with high egg abundance were identified. In total, 3837 eggs were collected providing 1882 adult mosquitoes in the 3 neighborhoods. All the specimens belonged to only one Aedes species, Ae. aegypti. The average of 15.89 eggs per ovitrap, 13.67 eggs per ovitrap, and 19.87 eggs per ovitrap were obtained in Anoumambo, Bromakoté, and Petit-Bassam, respectively, with no statistical difference between the three sites. A higher abundance of Ae. aegypti was observed during the long rainy season and the short dry season. The Moran analysis showed a clustered distribution of Ae. aegypti eggs during the long rainy season in the three sites and a random spatial distribution during the short dry season. Ovitraps with high number of eggs were aggregated in the peripheral part (near to the lagoon) of Anoumambo and Petit-Bassam in central Bromakoté and extending along the railway during the long rainy season. This study revealed a heterogeneous potential risk of transmission of arbovirus according to neighborhood. It provided data to better understand Ae. aegypti ecology to select appropriate periods and places for Aedes vector control actions and surveillance of arboviruses in Abidjan.
    Keywords:  Abidjan; Aedes aegypti; Côte d'Ivoire; arbovirus; seasonal variation; spatial distribution
  4. BMC Public Health. 2021 Jul 09. 21(1): 1362
      BACKGROUND: The outbreak of Zika virus in Brazil in 2015 followed the arrival of chikungunya in 2014 and a long history of dengue circulation. Vital to the response to these outbreaks of mosquito-borne pathogens has been the dissemination of public health messages, including those promoted through risk communication posters. This study explores the content of a sample of posters circulated in Brazil towards the end of the Zika epidemic in 2017 and analyses their potential effectiveness in inducing behaviour change.METHODS: A content analysis was performed on 37 posters produced in Brazil to address outbreaks of mosquito-borne pathogens. The six variables of the Health Belief Model were used to assess the potential effectiveness of the posters to induce behaviour change.
    RESULTS: Three overarching key messages emerged from the posters. These included (i) the arboviruses and their outcomes, (ii) a battle against the mosquito, and (iii) a responsibility to protect and prevent. Among the six variables utilised through the Health Belief Model, cues to action were most commonly featured, whilst the perceived benefits of engaging in behaviours to prevent arbovirus transmission were the least commonly featured.
    CONCLUSIONS: The posters largely focused on mosquito-borne transmission and the need to eliminate breeding sites, and neglected the risk of the sexual and congenital transmission of Zika and the importance of alternative preventive actions. This, we argue, may have limited the potential effectiveness of these posters to induce behaviour change.
    Keywords:  Arbovirus; Health belief model; Health communication; Poster; Public health messages; Zika
  5. PeerJ. 2021 ;9 e11633
      Background: Biological control using entomopathogenic nematodes (EPN) has demonstrated good potential to contribute to the integral control of mosquito larvae, which as adults are vectors of diseases such as Dengue fever, Zika and Chikungunya. However, until now there are no records of the presence of EPN or their killing capacity in Yucatán state, southern México. The objectives of the current study were: (1) to report the entomopathogenic nematodes present in Yucatán soils and (2) to determine the killing capacity of the most frequent and abundant EPN against Aedes aegypti mosquito larvae and the microbial community developed by Ae. Aegypti exposed to this EPN.Methods: The nematodes were collected by the insect trap technique using the great wax moth Galleria mellonella. Internal transcribed spacer (ITS), 28S gene of ribosomal DNA and phylogenetic analyses were performed to identify the EPN. For the bioassay, four concentrations of the most frequent and abundant EPN were tested: 1,260:1 infective juveniles (IJs) per mosquito larvae, 2,520 IJs:1, 3,780 IJs:1 and 5,040 IJs:1. High-throughput sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene was used to identify bacterial amplicon sequences in the mosquito larvae infected with EPN.
    Results: Six isolates of Heterorhabditis were recovered from 144 soil samples. Heterorhabditis indica (four isolates) was the most frequent and abundant EPN, followed by Heterorhabditis n. sp. (two isolates). Both nematodes are reported for the first time for Yucatán state, Mexico. The concentration of 2,520 IJs:1 produced 80% of mosquito larvae mortality in 48 h. Representative members of Photorhabdus genus were numerically dominant (74%) in mosquito larvae infected by H. indica. It is most likely that these bacteria produce secondary toxic metabolites that enhance the mortality of these mosquito larvae.
    Keywords:  16S rRNA; Aedes aegypti; Biological control; Galleria mellonella; Heterorhabditis indica; Photorhabdus
  6. Parasitol Res. 2021 Jul 17.
      In Brazil, the Amazon region comprises 99.5% of the reported malaria cases. However, another hotspot of the disease is the Atlantic Forest regions, with the sporadic occurrence of autochthonous human cases. In such context, this study sought to investigate the role of anopheline mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae) in the residual malaria transmission in Atlantic Forest areas. Two rural areas in the Espírito Santo state were the surveyed sites. Mosquitoes were captured using Shannon trap and CDC light traps and identified into species based on morphological characters. Ecological indexes (Shannon-Wiener diversity, Simpson's dominance, Pielou equability, and Sorensen similarity) were the tools used in the anopheline fauna characterization and comparison along with the two explored areas. The assessment of the sampling adequacy in the studied areas was possible through the generation of a species accumulation curve. A correlation test verified the influence of climatic variables on the anopheline species abundance. A total of 1471 female anopheline mosquitoes were collected from May 2019 to April 2020, representing 13 species. The species richness was higher in Valsugana Velha (hypo-endemic) than in Alto Caparaó (non-endemic). There was a significant variation in the species abundance between Valsugana Velha (n = 1438) and Alto Caparaó (n = 33). The most abundant species was Anopheles (Kerteszia) cruzii complex Dyar and Knab, 1908 representing 87% of the total anophelines collected. These results suggest that the Plasmodium spp. circulation in Brazilian Atlantic Forest areas occurs mainly due to the high frequency of Anopheles (K.) cruzii complex, considered the principal vector of simian and human malaria in the region.
    Keywords:  Anopheles; Brazil; Bromelia; Malaria; Mosquito vectors; Plasmodium
  7. Med Vet Entomol. 2021 Jul 16.
      Billions of people are at risk due to mosquito-borne diseases. Ideally, the control of mosquito-borne diseases should integrate mosquito control and surveillance to maximize transmission prevention while minimizing environmental impacts. Mosquito surveillance is often limited in scope by logistical constraints, especially the labour and expertise in identifying captured mosquitoes. Mosquito sounds, primarily the wingbeat frequencies (WBF), have been extensively studied in the literature, often targeting a straightforward assessment of this technology with species identification in laboratory conditions. Optical sensors for measuring the WBF of free-flying mosquitoes are the most recent proposal to automate species identification. However, many of the factors that may influence WBF within and between species have not been fully examined, resulting in failures in the species identification. Here we show that body size and temperature modify the wingbeat frequency of female Aedes [Stegomyia] aegypti Linnaeus (Diptera:Culicidae) and such an optical sensor can capture these alterations. We demonstrate that this study's optical sensor can distinguish wingbeat frequency from large and small mosquitoes at different temperatures. The relationship between WBF and size should be taken into account to improve the accuracy of devices that automatically identify species using WBF.
    Keywords:  Environmental conditions; free flight; inexpensive traps; real-time monitoring; small and large mosquitoes; temperature
  8. Lancet Planet Health. 2021 Jul;pii: S2542-5196(21)00132-7. [Epub ahead of print]5(7): e404-e414
      BACKGROUND: Mosquito-borne diseases are expanding their range, and re-emerging in areas where they had subsided for decades. The extent to which climate change influences the transmission suitability and population at risk of mosquito-borne diseases across different altitudes and population densities has not been investigated. The aim of this study was to quantify the extent to which climate change will influence the length of the transmission season and estimate the population at risk of mosquito-borne diseases in the future, given different population densities across an altitudinal gradient.METHODS: Using a multi-model multi-scenario framework, we estimated changes in the length of the transmission season and global population at risk of malaria and dengue for different altitudes and population densities for the period 1951-99. We generated projections from six mosquito-borne disease models, driven by four global circulation models, using four representative concentration pathways, and three shared socioeconomic pathways.
    FINDINGS: We show that malaria suitability will increase by 1·6 additional months (mean 0·5, SE 0·03) in tropical highlands in the African region, the Eastern Mediterranean region, and the region of the Americas. Dengue suitability will increase in lowlands in the Western Pacific region and the Eastern Mediterranean region by 4·0 additional months (mean 1·7, SE 0·2). Increases in the climatic suitability of both diseases will be greater in rural areas than in urban areas. The epidemic belt for both diseases will expand towards temperate areas. The population at risk of both diseases might increase by up to 4·7 additional billion people by 2070 relative to 1970-99, particularly in lowlands and urban areas.
    INTERPRETATION: Rising global mean temperature will increase the climatic suitability of both diseases particularly in already endemic areas. The predicted expansion towards higher altitudes and temperate regions suggests that outbreaks can occur in areas where people might be immunologically naive and public health systems unprepared. The population at risk of malaria and dengue will be higher in densely populated urban areas in the WHO African region, South-East Asia region, and the region of the Americas, although we did not account for urban-heat island effects, which can further alter the risk of disease transmission.
    FUNDING: UK Space Agency, Royal Society, UK National Institute for Health Research, and Swedish Research Council.
  9. Ann Entomol Soc Am. 2021 Jul;114(4): 397-414
      Despite the critical role that contact between hosts and vectors, through vector bites, plays in driving vector-borne disease (VBD) transmission, transmission risk is primarily studied through the lens of vector density and overlooks host-vector contact dynamics. This review article synthesizes current knowledge of host-vector contact with an emphasis on mosquito bites. It provides a framework including biological and mathematical definitions of host-mosquito contact rate, blood-feeding rate, and per capita biting rates. We describe how contact rates vary and how this variation is influenced by mosquito and vertebrate factors. Our framework challenges a classic assumption that mosquitoes bite at a fixed rate determined by the duration of their gonotrophic cycle. We explore alternative ecological assumptions based on the functional response, blood index, forage ratio, and ideal free distribution within a mechanistic host-vector contact model. We highlight that host-vector contact is a critical parameter that integrates many factors driving disease transmission. A renewed focus on contact dynamics between hosts and vectors will contribute new insights into the mechanisms behind VBD spread and emergence that are sorely lacking. Given the framework for including contact rates as an explicit component of mathematical models of VBD, as well as different methods to study contact rates empirically to move the field forward, researchers should explicitly test contact rate models with empirical studies. Such integrative studies promise to enhance understanding of extrinsic and intrinsic factors affecting host-vector contact rates and thus are critical to understand both the mechanisms driving VBD emergence and guiding their prevention and control.
    Keywords:  bite-exposure rate; blood-feeding rate; human–mosquito contact; mosquito biting rate; vector-borne diseases
  10. Sci Rep. 2021 Jul 16. 11(1): 14620
      Species from the Culex coronator complex are Neotropical species and potential vectors of Saint Louis and West Nile viruses. Culex coronator was first described in Trinidad and Tobago in the early twentieth century and since then it has invaded and has been reported established in most countries of the Americas. Species from the Culex coronator complex were first detected in the United States in the state of Louisiana in 2004 and were subsequently detected in Florida in 2005, reaching Miami-Dade County in 2008. We hypothesize that species from the Cx. coronator complex are adapting to urban environments in Miami-Dade County, Florida, and are becoming more present and abundant in these areas. Therefore, our objective was to investigate the patterns of the presence and abundance of species from the Cx. coronator complex in the urban areas of Miami-Dade County. Here we used weekly data comprised of 32 CDC traps from 2012 to 2020 and 150 BG-Sentinel traps from 2016 to 2020. A total of 34,146 female mosquitoes from the Cx. coronator complex were collected, 26,138 by CDC traps and 8008 by BG-Sentinel traps. While the number of CDC traps that were positive was relatively constant at 26-30 positive traps per year, the number of positive BG-Sentinel traps varied substantially from 50 to 87 positive traps per year. Furthermore, the heat map and logistic general linear model for repeated measures analyses showed a significant increase in both the distribution and abundance of mosquitoes from the Cx. coronator complex, indicating that these species are becoming more common in anthropized habitats being able to thrive in highly urbanized areas. The increase in the distribution and abundance of species from the Cx. coronator complex is a major public health concern. The ability of species from the Cx. coronator complex to benefit from urbanization highlights the need to better understand the mechanisms of how invasive vector mosquito species are adapting and exploiting urban habitats.
  11. Front Cell Infect Microbiol. 2021 ;11 654216
      Malaria transmission relies on parasite-mosquito midgut interaction. The interactive proteins are hypothesized to be ideal targets to block malaria transmission to mosquitoes. We chose 76 genes that contain signal peptide-coding regions and are upregulated and highly abundant at sexual stages. Forty-six of these candidate genes (60%) were cloned and expressed using the baculovirus expression system in insect cells. Six of them, e.g., PF3D7_0303900, PF3D7_0406200 (Pfs16), PF3D7_1204400 (Pfs37), PF3D7_1214800, PF3D7_1239400, and PF3D7_1472800 were discovered to interact with blood-fed mosquito midgut lysate. Previous works showed that among these interactive proteins, knockout the orthologs of Pfs37 or Pfs16 in P. berghei reduced oocysts in mosquitoes. Here we further found that anti-Pfs16 polyclonal antibody significantly inhibited P. falciparum transmission to Anopheles gambiae. Investigating these candidate proteins will improve our understanding of malaria transmission and discover new targets to break malaria transmission.
    Keywords:  Pfs16; Plasmodium; malaria transmission; mosquito midgut invasion; parasite-mosquito interaction; sexual stage
  12. Front Microbiol. 2021 ;12 695173
      Chikungunya fever (CHIKF) is an arbovirus disease caused by chikungunya virus (CHIKV), an alphavirus of Togaviridae family. Transmission follows a human-mosquito-human cycle starting with a mosquito bite. Subsequently, symptoms develop after 2-6 days of incubation, including high fever and severe arthralgia. The disease is self-limiting and usually resolve within 2 weeks. However, chronic disease can last up to several years with persistent polyarthralgia. Overlapping symptoms and common vector with dengue and malaria present many challenges for diagnosis and treatment of this disease. CHIKF was reported in India in 1963 for the first time. After a period of quiescence lasting up to 32 years, CHIKV re-emerged in India in 2005. Currently, every part of the country has become endemic for the disease with outbreaks resulting in huge economic and productivity losses. Several mutations have been identified in circulating strains of the virus resulting in better adaptations or increased fitness in the vector(s), effective transmission, and disease severity. CHIKV evolution has been a significant driver of epidemics in India, hence, the need to focus on proper surveillance, and implementation of prevention and control measure in the country. Presently, there are no licensed vaccines or antivirals available; however, India has initiated several efforts in this direction including traditional medicines. In this review, we present the current status of CHIKF in India.
    Keywords:  Chikungunya fever (CHIKF); chikungunya virus (CHIKV); disease resolution; epidemiology; polyarthralgia
  13. Acta Trop. 2021 Jul 09. pii: S0001-706X(21)00219-9. [Epub ahead of print] 106040
      India is a malaria endemic country which is targeting malaria elimination by 2027. Transmission intensities are low-to-moderate depending on the region supported by multiple disease vectors. Among these, comparatively North-East India contributes to high proportions of malaria cases annually, the majority of which are due to Plasmodium falciparum (90%). Anopheles minimus and An. baimaii (sibling species in the An. dirus complex) are widely prevalent and incriminated as vectors of malaria. Number of intervention tools were field-evaluated beginning 1988 to date against disease vectors and causative parasites to contain the spread of malaria. These included (i) insecticide-treated netting materials (ITNs) for vector control, (ii) rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) for in situ diagnosis, and (iii) therapeutic efficacy of artemisinin-based combination therapies (ACTs) for improved drug-policy; all of which were incorporated in healthcare services resulting in substantial disease transmission reduction. Populations of both An. minimus and An. baimaii were observed depleting, instead An. culicifacies s.l. recorded to be fast invading degraded forests and assessed to be resistant to multiple insecticides. Of the two prevalent Plasmodium species, while P. vivax continued to be susceptible to chloroquine therapy, P. falciparum had emerged resistant to most available antimalarial drugs except ACTs over space and time and spreading to peninsular India threatening elimination efforts. Disease transmission trends were observed to be declining for which the state of Assam has made huge strides reporting steady fall in cases each passing year vis-à-vis Meghalaya, Mizoram and Tripura (all sharing international border with Bangladesh), in which malaria transmission remained uninterrupted. Consequently, control of malaria in the North-East region of India is of immediate importance and needs prioritization for intensified disease surveillance and control interventions coupled with improved access to healthcare services mitigating risk of disease outbreaks and spread of drug-resistant malaria helping realize the goal of malaria elimination in the country.
    Keywords:  Cross-border malaria; Drug-resistance; Malaria elimination; Malaria transmission; North-East India; Vector control
  14. Malar J. 2021 Jul 13. 20(1): 315
      BACKGROUND: Saudi Arabia and Yemen are the only two countries in the Arabian Peninsula that are yet to achieve malaria elimination. Over the past two decades, the malaria control programme in Saudi Arabia has successfully reduced the annual number of malaria cases, with the lowest incidence rate across the country reported in 2014. This study aims to investigate the distribution of residual malaria in Jazan region and to identify potential climatic drivers of autochthonous malaria cases in the region.METHODS: A cross-sectional study was carried out from 1 April 2018 to 31 January 2019 in Jazan region, southwestern Saudi Arabia, which targeted febrile individuals attending hospitals and primary healthcare centres. Participants' demographic data were collected, including age, gender, nationality, and residence. Moreover, association of climatic variables with the monthly autochthonous malaria cases reported during the period of 2010-2017 was retrospectively analysed.
    RESULTS: A total of 1124 febrile subjects were found to be positive for malaria during the study period. Among them, 94.3 and 5.7% were infected with Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax, respectively. In general, subjects aged 18-30 years and those aged over 50 years had the highest (42.7%) and lowest (5.9%) percentages of malaria cases. Similarly, the percentage of malaria-positive cases was higher among males than females (86.2 vs 13.8%), among non-Saudi compared to Saudi subjects (70.6 vs 29.4%), and among patients residing in rural rather than in urban areas (89.8 vs 10.2%). A total of 407 autochthonous malaria cases were reported in Jazan region between 2010 and 2017. Results of zero-inflated negative binomial regression analysis showed that monthly average temperature and relative humidity were the significant climatic determinants of autochthonous malaria in the region.
    CONCLUSION: Malaria remains a public health problem in most governorates of Jazan region. The identification and monitoring of malaria transmission hotspots and predictors would enable control efforts to be intensified and focused on specific areas and therefore expedite the elimination of residual malaria from the whole region.
    Keywords:  Climatic factors; Elimination; Infectious diseases; Jazan; Malaria; Saudi Arabia
  15. BMC Public Health. 2021 Jul 13. 21(1): 1389
      BACKGROUND: In China, Guangdong and Yunnan are the two most dengue-affected provinces. This study aimed to compare the epidemiological characteristics of dengue fever in Guangdong and Yunnan during 2004-2018.METHODS: Descriptive analyses were used to explore the temporal, spatial, and demographic distribution of dengue fever.
    RESULTS: Of the 73,761 dengue cases reported in mainland China during 2004-2018, 93.7% indigenous and 65.9% imported cases occurred in Guangdong and Yunnan, respectively. A total of 55,970 and 5938 indigenous cases occurred in 108 Guangdong and 8 Yunnan counties, respectively during 2004-2018. Whereas 1146 and 3050 imported cases occurred in 84 Guangdong and 72 Yunnan counties, respectively during 2004-2018. Guangdong had a much higher average yearly indigenous incidence rate (3.65 (1/100000) vs 0.86 (1/100000)), but a much lower average yearly imported incidence rate (0.07 (1/100000) vs 0.44(1/100000)) compared with Yunnan in 2004-2018. Furthermore, dengue fever occurred more widely in space and more frequently in time in Guangdong. Guangdong and Yunnan had similar seasonal characteristics for dengue fever, but Guangdong had a longer peak period. Most dengue cases were clustered in the south-western border of Yunnan and the Pearl River Delta region in Guangdong. Most of the imported cases (93.9%) in Guangdong and Yunnan were from 9 Southeast Asian countries. Thailand, Cambodia, and Malaysia imported mainly into Guangdong while Myanmar and Laos imported into Yunnan. There was a strong male predominance among imported cases and an almost equal gender distribution among indigenous cases. Most dengue cases occurred in individuals aged 21-50 years, accounting for 57.3% (Guangdong) vs. 62.8% (Yunnan) of indigenous and 83.2% (Guangdong) vs. 62.6% (Yunnan) of imported cases. The associated major occupations (house worker or unemployed, retiree, and businessman, for indigenous cases; and businessman, for imported cases), were similar. However, farmers accounted for a larger proportion of dengue cases in Yunnan.
    CONCLUSIONS: Identifying the different epidemiological characteristics of dengue fever in Guangdong and Yunnan can be helpful to formulate targeted, strategic plans, and implement effective public health prevention measures in China.
    Keywords:  Comparative analyses; Demographic; Epidemiological characteristics; Guangdong; Spatial; Temporal; Yunnan
  16. Mem Inst Oswaldo Cruz. 2021 ;pii: S0074-02762021000100312. [Epub ahead of print]116 e200441
      BACKGROUND: A previous phylogeographic study revealed two Aedes aegypti African-related mitochondrial lineages distributed in Colombian's cities with different eco-epidemiologic characteristics with regard to dengue virus (DENV). It has been proposed these lineages might indicate independent invasion sources.OBJECTIVES: Assessing to Colombian population structure and to support evidence of its probable source origin.
    METHODS: We analysed a total of 267 individuals from cities of Bello, Riohacha and Villavicencio, which 241 were related to the West and East African mitochondrial lineages (termed here as WAL and EAL, respectively). Eight polymorphic microsatellite loci were analysed aiming population structure.
    FINDINGS: Results indicate substantial gene flow among distant and low-connected cities composing a panmictic population with incipient local differentiation of Ae. aegypti is placed in Colombia. Likewise, genetic evidence indicates no significant differences among individuals related to WAL and EAL is placed.
    MAIN CONCLUSIONS: Minimal genetic differentiation in low-connected Ae. aegypti populations of Colombia, and lack concordance between mitochondrial and nuclear genealogies suggest that Colombian Ae. aegypti shared a common demographic history. Under this scenario, we suggest current Ae. aegypti population structure reflects a single origin instead of contemporary migration, which founding populations have a single source from a mitochondrial polymorphic African ancient.
  17. Methods Ecol Evol. 2021 Jun;12(6): 1008-1016
      Current mark-release-recapture methodologies are limited in their ability to address complex problems in vector biology, such as studying multiple groups overlapping in space and time. Additionally, limited mark retention, reduced post-marking survival and the large effort in marking, collection and recapture all complicate effective insect tracking.We have developed and evaluated a marking method using a fluorescent dye (SmartWater®) combined with synthetic DNA tags to informatively and efficiently mark adult mosquitoes using an airbrush pump and nebulizer. Using a handheld UV flashlight, the fluorescent marking enabled quick and simple initial detection of recaptures in a field-ready and non-destructive approach that when combined with an extraction-free PCR on individual mosquito legs provides potentially unlimited marking information.This marking, first tested in the laboratory with Anopheles gambiae s.l. mosquitoes, did not affect survival (median ages 24-28 days, p-adj > 0.25), oviposition (median eggs/female of 28.8, 32.5, 33.3 for water, green, red dyes, respectively, p-adj > 0.44) or Plasmodium competence (mean oocysts 5.56-10.6, p-adj > 0.95). DNA and fluorescence had 100% retention up to 3 weeks (longest time point tested) with high intensity, indicating marks would persist longer.We describe a novel, simple, no/low-impact and long-lasting marking method that allows separation of multiple insect subpopulations by combining unlimited length and sequence variation in the synthetic DNA tags. This method can be readily deployed in the field for marking multiple groups of mosquitoes or other insects.
    Keywords:  Anopheles gambiae; DNA; Mark–release–recapture; dispersal; fluorescent
  18. Mem Inst Oswaldo Cruz. 2021 ;pii: S0074-02762021000100403. [Epub ahead of print]116 e210064
      Unforeseen Plasmodium infections in the Atlantic Forest of Brazilian Extra-Amazonian region could jeopardise malaria elimination. A human malaria case was registered in Três Forquilhas, in the Atlantic Forest biome of Rio Grande do Sul, after a 45 years' time-lapsed without any malaria autochthonous notification in this southern Brazilian state. This finding represents the expansion of the malaria distribution areas in Brazil and the southernmost human malaria case record in South America in this decade. The coexistence of the bromeliad-breeding vector Anopheles (Kerteszia) cruzii and non-human primates in the Atlantic Forest regularly visited by the patient claimed for the zoonotic origin of this infection. The reemergence of Atlantic Forest human malaria in Rio Grande do Sul was also discussed.
  19. Zoonoses Public Health. 2021 Jul 09.
      West Nile virus infections in humans are continuously increasing, and the virus has spread considerably in Europe over the past decade. The incidence of the disease was unusually high between 2018 and 2020. The resulting model identifies the West Nile virus outbreak-prone areas during 2021, even in regions where the virus has not yet been discovered. It is remarkable that in Central Europe, new favourable areas are emerging, where early actions could lessen the impact of the disease.
    Keywords:  Europe; West Nile virus; Zoonoses; infectious disease; outbreak; prediction
  20. PLoS One. 2021 ;16(7): e0254369
      BACKGROUND: Dengue has emerged as a major public health problem in Bhutan, with increasing incidence and widening geographic spread over recent years. This study aimed to investigate the knowledge and clinical management of dengue among medical practitioners in Bhutan.METHODS: We administered a survey questionnaire to all practitioners currently registered under the Bhutan Medical and Health Council. The questionnaire contained items on four domains including transmission, clinical course and presentation, diagnosis and management, and surveillance and prevention of dengue. Participants were able to respond using an online Qualtrics survey, with the invitation and link distributed via email.
    RESULTS: A total of 97 respondents were included in the study (response rate: 12.7%), of which 61.86% were Health Assistants/Clinical Officers (HAs/COs) and 38.14% were medical doctors. The afternoon feeding behaviour of Aedes mosquito was correctly identified by only 24.7% of the respondents, and ~66.0% of them failed to identify lethargy as a warning sign for severe dengue. Knowledge on diagnosis using NS1 antigen and the clinical significance of elevated haematocrit for initial fluid replacement was strikingly low at 47.4% and 27.8% respectively. Despite dengue being a nationally notifiable disease, ~60% of respondents were not knowledgeable on the timing and type of cases to be reported. Respondent's median score was higher for the surveillance and reporting domain, followed by their knowledge on transmission of dengue. Statistically significant factors associated with higher knowledge included respondents being a medical doctor, working in a hospital and experience of having diagnosed dengue.
    CONCLUSION: The study revealed major gaps on knowledge and clinical management practices related to dengue in Bhutan. Physicians and health workers working in Basic Health Units need training and regular supervision to improve their knowledge on the care of dengue patients.