Marilyn O’Hara Ruiz, a professor of pathobiology, led the study with graduate student Allison Gardner.
The study was conducted using mosquito larvae collected from catch basins in Alsip, a southwest suburb. The researchers examined weather factors that influenced the levels of mosquito larvae in the basins. They found that low rainfall and high temperatures are associated with high numbers of larvae.
The study appears in the Journal of Medical Entomology.
Checking storm water catch basins for mosquito larvae of the type that carries West Nile virus is particularly important in tracking the disease in populated areas, Ruiz said.
“Catch basins are important breeding sites for the vector of West Nile Virus – the Culex mosquitoes,” Ruiz said.
The West Nile Virus first appeared in Illinois in 2002, with 884 human infections statewide that year. That remains the highest number of recorded human cases in Illinois. The disease still is found in humans, birds and mosquitoes in the state.
The researchers found that rainfall was the primary factor in determining the presence of larvae, with low rainfall associated with greater numbers of larvae. The studies showed that while some rain is necessary for the larvae to develop, excess rain flushes out the premature larvae.
High temperatures also appeared to contribute to more larvae in the basins. The researchers found that the larvae developed more quickly when subject to both high air and water temperatures.
According to Ruiz, this analysis should allow for further research into the environmental factors affecting the abundance of WNV-carrying mosquitoes, as weather variability may not affect all catch basins equally. The results also may help those hoping to lessen populations of disease-carrying mosquitoes to properly treat catch basins to eradicate potentially harmful larvae.
Makenzie Dankle | EurekAlert!
The personality factor: How to foster the sharing of research data
06.09.2017 | ZBW – Leibniz-Informationszentrum Wirtschaft
Europe’s Demographic Future. Where the Regions Are Heading after a Decade of Crises
10.08.2017 | Berlin-Institut für Bevölkerung und Entwicklung
Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.
A warming planet
Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.
The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...
Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...
Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!
When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...
For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.
Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...
19.09.2017 | Event News
12.09.2017 | Event News
06.09.2017 | Event News
22.09.2017 | Life Sciences
22.09.2017 | Medical Engineering
22.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy