Wolbachia infection reduces blood-feeding success in the dengue fever mosquito, Aedes aegypti

Turley, Andrew P., Moreira, Luciano A., O'Neill, Scott L. and McGraw, Elizabeth A. (2009) Wolbachia infection reduces blood-feeding success in the dengue fever mosquito, Aedes aegypti. PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, 3 9: e516.1-e516.6. doi:10.1371/journal.pntd.0000516

Author Turley, Andrew P.
Moreira, Luciano A.
O'Neill, Scott L.
McGraw, Elizabeth A.
Title Wolbachia infection reduces blood-feeding success in the dengue fever mosquito, Aedes aegypti
Formatted title
Wolbachia Infection Reduces Blood-Feeding Success in the Dengue Fever Mosquito, Aedes aegypti
Journal name PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1935-2727
Publication date 2009-09-01
Year available 2009
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1371/journal.pntd.0000516
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 3
Issue 9
Start page e516.1
End page e516.6
Total pages 6
Editor Peter Hotez
Place of publication San Francisco, CA, United States
Publisher Public Library of Science
Language eng
Subject 060808 Invertebrate Biology
920404 Disease Distribution and Transmission (incl. Surveillance and Response)
Formatted abstract
The mosquito Aedes aegypti was recently transinfected with a life-shortening strain of the endosymbiont Wolbachia pipientis (wMelPop) as the first step in developing a biocontrol strategy for dengue virus transmission. In addition to life-shortening, the wMelPop-infected mosquitoes also exhibit increased daytime activity and metabolic rates. Here we sought to quantify the blood-feeding behaviour of Wolbachia-infected females as an indicator of any virulence or energetic drain associated with Wolbachia infection.

Methodology/Principal Findings:
In a series of blood-feeding trials in response to humans, we have shown that Wolbachia-infected mosquitoes do not differ in their response time to humans, but that as they age they obtain fewer and smaller blood meals than Wolbachia-uninfected controls. Lastly, we observed a behavioural characteristic in the Wolbachia infected mosquitoes best described as a "bendy" proboscis that may explain the decreased biting success.

Taken together the evidence suggests that wMelPop infection may be causing tissue damage in a manner that intensifies with mosquito age and that leads to reduced blood-feeding success. These behavioural changes require further investigation with respect to a possible physiological mechanism and their role in vectorial capacity of the insect. The selective decrease of feeding success in older mosquitoes may act synergistically with other Wolbachiaassociated traits including life-shortening and viral protection in biocontrol strategies.
Keyword Virulent Wolbachia
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: 2010 Higher Education Research Data Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
Version Filter Type
Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 89 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 94 times in Scopus Article | Citations
Google Scholar Search Google Scholar
Created: Thu, 12 Nov 2009, 21:56:52 EST by Mr Andrew Martlew on behalf of School of Biological Sciences