Behavioural shifts in the canonical location and timing of biting have been reported in natural populations of anopheline malaria vectors following the implementation of insecticide-based indoor vector control interventions. These modifications increase the likelihood of human-vector contact and allow mosquitoes to avoid insecticides, both conditions being favourable to residual transmission of the malarial parasites. The biting behaviour of mosquitoes follows rhythms that are under the control of biological clocks and environmental conditions, modulated by physiological states. In this work we explore modifications of spontaneous locomotor activity expressed by mosquitoes in different physiological states to highlight phenotypic variability associated to circadian control that may contribute to explain residual transmission in the field.
Anopheles mosquitoes are the sole vectors of malaria. Although adult females are directly responsible for disease transmission and accordingly have been extensively studied, the survival of pre-adult larval stages is vital. Mosquito larvae utilize a spectrum of chemosensory and other cues to navigate their aquatic habitats to avoid predators and search for food.
In Central Africa, the malaria vector Anopheles coluzzii is predominant in urban and coastal habitats. However, little is known about the environmental factors that may be involved in this process. Here, we performed an analysis of 28 physicochemical characteristics of 59 breeding sites across 5 urban and rural sites in coastal areas of Central Africa. We then modelled the relative frequency of An. coluzzii larvae to these physicochemical parameters in order to investigate environmental patterns.
Anopheles coluzzii females, important malaria vectors in Africa, mate only once in their lifetime. Mating occurs in aerial swarms with a high male-to-female ratio, where traits underlying male mating success are largely unknown. Here, we investigated whether cuticular hydrocarbons (CHCs) influence mating success in natural mating swarms in Burkina Faso.
For species lacking parental care, selection of a suitable habitat for their offspring, with a limited predation risk, is important. The ability of two African malaria mosquito females to detect a predation threat for their larvae was assessed through an oviposition choice test design. Our results suggest that gravid females of both Anopheles gambiae s.s. and An. coluzzii (Diptera, Culicidae) were able to detect the presence of a predator (Anisops jaczewskii, Notonectidae, Hemiptera; backswimmer).
Anopheles coluzzii is a major malaria vector throughout its distribution in west-central Africa. Here we present a whole-genome study of 142 specimens from nine countries in continental Africa and three islands in the Gulf of Guinea. This sample set covers a large part of this species' geographic range. Our population genomic analyses included a description of the structure of mainland populations, island populations, and connectivity between them.
Vitellogenesis and oocyte maturation require anautogenous female Anopheles mosquitoes to obtain a bloodmeal from a vertebrate host. The bloodmeal is rich in proteins that are readily broken down into amino acids in the midgut lumen and absorbed by the midgut epithelial cells where they are converted into lipids and then transported to other tissues including ovaries.
Malaria control is heavily reliant on the use of insecticides that target and kill the adult female Anopheline vector. The intensive use of insecticides of the pyrethroid class has led to widespread resistance in mosquito populations. The intensity of pyrethroid resistance in some settings in Africa means mosquitoes can contact bednets treated with this insecticide class multiple times with minimal mortality effects. Furthermore, both ageing and diel cycle have been shown to have large impacts on the resistance phenotype. Together, these traits may affect other aspects of vector biology controlling the vectorial capacity or fitness of the mosquito.
Anopheline mosquitoes are the sole vectors of malaria and rely on olfactory cues for host seeking in which ammonia derived from human sweat plays an essential role. To investigate the function of the Anopheles coluzzii ammonium transporter (AcAmt) in the mosquito olfactory system, we generated an AcAmt null mutant line using CRISPR/Cas9.
Anopheles mosquitoes transmit malaria, which affects one-fifth of the world population. A comprehensive understanding of mosquito behaviour is essential for the development of novel tools for vector control and surveillance. Despite abundant research on mosquito behaviour, little is known on the stimuli that drive malaria vectors during the landing phase of host-seeking.