Specifically, they found that dengue virus infection of the mosquito’s salivary gland triggered a response that involved genes of the insect’s immune system, feeding behavior and the mosquito’s ability to sense odors. The researchers findings are published in the March 29 edition of PLoS Pathogens.
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
Picture shows the presence of the dengue virus in the mosquitoes chemosensory (antennae and palp) and feeding organs (proboscis).
PLoS Pathogens (March 29, 2012)
Dengue virus is primarily spread to people by the mosquito Aedes aegypti. Over 2.5 billion people live in areas where dengue fever is endemic. The World Health Organization estimates that there are between 50 million and 100 million dengue infections each year.
“Our study shows that the dengue virus infects mosquito organs, the salivary glands and antennae that are essential for finding and feeding on a human host. This infection induces odorant-binding protein genes, which enable the mosquito to sense odors. The virus may, therefore, facilitate the mosquito’s host-seeking ability, and could—at least theoretically—increase transmission efficiency, although we don’t fully understand the relationships between feeding efficiency and virus transmission,” said George Dimopoulus, PhD, senior author of the study and professor with the Bloomberg School’s Malaria Research Institute. “In other words, a hungrier mosquito with a better ability to sense food is more likely to spread dengue virus.”
For the study, researchers performed a genome-wide microarray gene expression analysis of dengue-infected mosquitoes. Infection regulated 147 genes with predicted functions in various processes including virus transmission, immunity, blood-feeding and host-seeking. Further analysis of infected mosquitoes showed that silencing, or “switching off,” two odorant-binding protein genes resulted in an overall reduction in the mosquito’s blood-acquisition capacity from a single host by increasing the time it took the for mosquito to probe for a meal.
“We have, for the first time shown, that a human pathogen can modulate feeding-related genes and behavior of its vector mosquito, and the impact of this on transmission of disease could be significant,” said Dimopoulos.
“Dengue virus infection of the Aedes aegypti salivary gland and chemosensory apparatus induces genes that modulate infection and blood-feeding behavior” was written by Shuzhen Sim, Jose L. Ramirez and George Dimopoulos.
Funding for the research was provided by National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Disease at the National Institutes of Health.
Tim Parsons | Newswise Science News
WPI team grows heart tissue on spinach leaves
23.03.2017 | Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Inactivate vaccines faster and more effectively using electron beams
23.03.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Organische Elektronik, Elektronenstrahl- und Plasmatechnik FEP
Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.
The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.
Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...
Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.
Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...
In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...
20.03.2017 | Event News
14.03.2017 | Event News
07.03.2017 | Event News
23.03.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering
23.03.2017 | Earth Sciences
23.03.2017 | Life Sciences