Insecticide resistance jeopardizes the control of mosquito populations and mosquito-borne disease control, which creates a major public health concern. Two-dimensional electrophoresis identified one protein segment with high sequence homology to part of Aedes aegypti iron-responsive element binding protein (IRE-BP).
RT-PCR and RACE (rapid amplification of cDNA end) were used to clone a cDNA encoding full length IRE-BP 1. Real-time quantitative RT-PCR was used to evaluate the transcriptional level changes in the Cr-IRE strain Aedes aegypti compared to the susceptible strain of Cx. pipiens pallens. The expression profile of the gene was established in the mosquito life cycle. Methyl tritiated thymidine (3H-TdR) was used to observe the cypermethrin resistance changes in C6/36 cells containing the stably transfected IRE-BP 1 gene of Cx. pipiens pallens.
The complete sequence of iron responsive element binding protein 1 (IRE-BP 1) has been cloned from the cypermethrin-resistant strain of Culex pipiens pallens (Cr-IRE strain). Quantitative RT-PCR analysis indicated that the IRE-BP 1 transcription level was 6.7 times higher in the Cr-IRE strain than in the susceptible strain of 4th instar larvae. The IRE-BP 1 expression was also found to be consistently higher throughout the life cycle of the Cr-IRE strain. A protein of predicted size 109.4 kDa has been detected by Western blotting in IRE-BP 1-transfected mosquito C6/36 cells. These IRE-BP 1-transfected cells also showed enhanced cypermethrin resistance compared to null-transfected or plasmid vector-transfected cells as determined by 3H-TdR incorporation.
IRE-BP 1 is expressed at higher levels in the Cr-IRE strain, and may confer some insecticide resistance in Cx. pipiens pallens.
The Culex pipiens complex in Asia includes a temperate subspecies, Culex pipiens pallens, of uncertain taxonomic status. The shape of the male genitalia suggests it is a hybrid between Cx. pipiens and Cx. quinquefasciatus. We studied populations of Cx. p. pallens in Japan, Korea, and China and compared them to local populations of Cx. quinquefasciatus and Cx. p. pipiens. We examined variation in a nuclear intron in the acetylcholinesterase-2 gene [ACE] and eight microsatellite loci. We found a distinct microsatellite signature for Cx. p. pallens indicating restricted gene flow between Eastern and Western populations of Cx. pipiens, supporting the existence of two subspecies. Furthermore, a multilocus genotype analysis revealed current hybridization between Cx. p. pallens and Cx. quinquefasciatus in southern Japan, Republic of Korea, and China but not in Hokkaido, in northern Japan. Surprisingly, however, we found that the sex-linked ACE locus in chromosome I has introgressed asymmetrically through the males such that all male Cx. p. pallens have a copy of the Cx. quinquefasciatus ACE locus. This result highlights some of the potential consequences of hybridization between local and introduced species to disease transmission worldwide.
HYBRIDIZATION; GENETIC INTROGRESSION; SPECIATION; INVASIVE SPECIES; DISEASE VECTORS; ASIA; SEX-LINKED
Pyrethroid insecticides have been extensively used in China and worldwide for public health pest control. Accurate resistance monitoring is essential to guide the rational use of insecticides and resistance management. Here we examined the nucleotide diversity of the para-sodium channel gene, which confers knockdown resistance (kdr) in Culex pipiens pallens mosquitoes in China. The sequence analysis of the para-sodium channel gene identified L1014F and L1014S mutations. We developed and validated allele-specific PCR and the real-time TaqMan methods for resistance diagnosis. The real-time TaqMan method is more superior to the allele-specific PCR method as evidenced by higher amplification rate and better sensitivity and specificity. Significant positive correlation between kdr allele frequency and bioassay-based resistance phenotype demonstrates that the frequency of L1014F and L1014S mutations in the kdr gene can be used as a molecular marker for deltamethrin resistance monitoring in natural Cx. pipiens pallens populations in the East China region. The laboratory selection experiment found that L1014F mutation frequency, but not L1014S mutation, responded to deltamethrin selection, suggesting that the L1014F mutation is the key mutation conferring resistance to deltamethrin. High L1014F mutation frequency detected in six populations of Cx. pipens pallens suggests high prevalence of pyrethroid resistance in Eastern China, calling for further surveys to map the resistance in China and for investigating alternative mosquito control strategies.
In China, large amounts of chemical insecticides are applied in fields or indoors every year, directly or indirectly bringing selection pressure on vector mosquitoes. Culex pipiens complex has evolved to be resistant to all types of chemical insecticides, especially organophosphates, through carboxylesterases. Six resistant carboxylesterase alleles (Ester) were recorded previously and sometimes co-existed in one field population, representing a complex situation for the evolution of Ester genes.
In order to explore the evolutionary scenario, we analyzed the data from an historical record in 2003 and a recent investigation on five Culex pipiens pallens populations sampled from north China in 2010. Insecticide bioassays showed that these five populations had high resistance to pyrethroids, medium resistance to organophosphates, and low resistance to carbamates. Six types of Ester alleles, EsterB1, Ester2, Ester8, Ester9, EsterB10, and Ester11 were identified, and the overall pattern of their frequencies in geographic distribution was consistent with the report seven years prior to this study. Statistical correlation analysis indicated that Ester8 and Ester9 positively correlated with resistance to four insecticides, and EsterB10 to one insecticide. The occurrences of these three alleles were positively correlated, while the occurrence of EsterB1 was negatively correlated with Ester8, indicating an allelic competition.
Our analysis suggests that one insecticide can select multiple Ester alleles and one Ester allele can work on multiple insecticides. The evolutionary scenario of carboxylesterases under insecticide selection is possibly "one to many".
insecticide resistance; carboxylesterases; mosquito; evolution
The transmission of vector-borne pathogens is greatly influenced by the ecology of their vector, which is in turn shaped by genetic ancestry, the environment, and the hosts it feeds on. One group of vectors, the mosquitoes in the Culex pipiens complex, play key roles in the transmission of a range of pathogens including several viruses such as West Nile and St. Louis encephalitis viruses, avian malaria (Plasmodium spp.), and filarial worms. The Cx. pipiens complex includes Cx. pipiens pipiens with two forms, pipiens and molestus, Cx. pipiens pallens, Cx. quinquefasciatus, Cx. australicus, and Cx. globocoxitus. While several members of the complex have limited geographic distributions, Cx. pipiens pipiens and Cx. quinquefasciatus are found in all known urban and sub-urban temperate and tropical regions, respectively, across the world, where they are often principal disease vectors. In addition, hybrids are common in areas of overlap. Although gaps in our knowledge still remain, the advent of genetic tools has greatly enhanced our understanding of the history of speciation, domestication, dispersal, and hybridization. We review the taxonomy, genetics, evolution, behavior, and ecology, of members of the Cx. pipiens complex and their role in the transmission of medically important pathogens. The adaptation of Cx. pipiens complex mosquitoes to human-altered environments led to their global distribution through dispersal via humans and, combined with their mixed feeding patterns on birds and mammals (including humans), increased the transmission of several avian pathogens to humans. We highlight several unanswered questions that will increase our ability to control diseases transmitted by these mosquitoes.
Vector borne disease; invasive; West Nile virus; arbovirus; bridge vector; vector competence; Plasmodium
Vector-borne diseases remain a threat to public health, especially in tropical countries. The incompatible insect technique has been explored as a potential control strategy for several important insect vectors. However, this strategy has not been tested in Culex pipiens pallens, the most prevalent mosquito species in China. Previous works used introgression to generate new strains that matched the genetic backgrounds of target populations while harboring a new Wolbachia endosymbiont, resulting in mating competitiveness and cytoplasmic incompatibility. The generation of these incompatible insects is often time-consuming, and the long-term stability of the newly created insect-Wolbachia symbiosis is uncertain. Considering the wide distribution of Cx. pipiens pallens and hence possible isolation of different populations, we sought to test for incompatibilities between natural populations and the possibility of exploiting these incompatibilities as a control strategy.
Three field populations were collected from three geographic locations in eastern China. Reciprocal cross results showed that bi-directional patterns of incompatibility existed between some populations. Mating competition experiments indicated that incompatible males could compete with cognate males in mating with females, leading to reduced overall fecundity. F1 offspring from incompatible crosses maintained their maternal crossing types. All three populations tested positive for Wolbachia. Removal of Wolbachia by tetracycline rendered matings between these populations fully compatible.
Our findings indicate that naturally occurring patterns of cytoplasmic incompatibility between Cx. pipiens pallens populations can be the basis of a control strategy for this important vector species. The observed incompatibilities are caused by Wolbachia. More tests including field trials are warranted to evaluate the feasibility of this strategy as a supplement to other control measures.
Population suppression is an important component of mosquito control measures. The incompatible insect technique exploits the monogamous mating behavior of female mosquitoes to decrease the percentage of females inseminated by compatible males and hence reduce overall fecundity. Previous studies used genetically engineered Wolbachia-infected mosquitoes as the sources of incompatible males. The long-term stability of these mosquitoes is unknown. In this study, we examined naturally occurring incompatibilities between different field populations of Culex pipiens pallens, a vector of West Nile Virus and filarial worms widely distributed in China. We found that bi-directional patterns of incompatibility existed between some Cx. pipiens pallens populations. Incompatible males could compete against cognate males in mating with females and suppress reproduction. The level of suppression depended on the relative population sizes of incompatible and cognate males. We also found that these incompatibilities were preserved in the offspring from incompatible crosses, indicating that this control strategy is likely to be sustainable when applied repeatedly to successive mosquito generations. Our data also indicate that these incompatibilities were caused by endosymbiont Wolbachia, which is also the basis for cytoplasmic incompatibility in a variety of mosquito species. Our results may help to design simpler and more time-effective control strategies for a number of vector-borne diseases.
Analysis of Culex pipiens mosquitoes collected from a single site in Lebanon in 2005, revealed an alarming frequency of ace-1 alleles conferring resistance to organophosphate insecticides. Following this, in 2006 the majority of municipalities switched to pyrethroids after a long history of organophosphate usage in the country; however, since then no studies have assessed the impact of changing insecticide class on the frequency of resistant ace-1 alleles in C. pipiens.
C. pipiens mosquitoes were captured indoors from 25 villages across the country and subjected to established methods for the analysis of gene amplification at the Ester locus and target site mutations in ace-1 gene that confer resistance to organophosphates.
We conducted the first large-scale screen for resistance to organosphosphates in C. pipiens mosquitoes collected from Lebanon. The frequency of carboxylesterase (Ester) and ace-1 alleles conferring resistance to organophosphates were assessed among C. pipiens mosquitoes collected from 25 different villages across the country between December 2008 and December 2009. Established enzymatic assay and PCR-based molecular tests, both diagnostic of the major target site mutations in ace-1 revealed the absence of the F290V mutation among sampled mosquitoes and significant reduction in the frequency of G119S mutation compared to that previously reported for mosquitoes collected from Beirut in 2005. We also identified a new duplicated ace-1 allele, named ace-1D13, exhibiting a resistant phenotype by associating a susceptible and a resistant copy of ace-1 in a mosquito line sampled from Beirut in 2005. Fisher’s exact test on ace-1 frequencies in the new sample sites, showed that some populations exhibited a significant excess of heterozygotes, suggesting that the duplicated allele is still present. Starch gel electrophoresis indicated that resistance at the Ester locus was mainly attributed to the Ester2 allele, which exhibits a broad geographical distribution.
Our analysis suggests that the frequency of resistant ace-1 alleles in mosquito populations can be downshifted, and in certain cases (F290V mutation) even eliminated, by switching to a different class of insecticides, possibly because of the fitness cost associated with these alleles.
Insecticide resistance; Acetylcholine esterase; Culex pipiens
The evolution of insecticide resistance and persistence of resistance phenotypes are influenced by the fitness of resistance alleles in the absence of insecticide pressure. Experimental determination of fitness is difficult, but fitness can be inferred by measuring changes in allele frequencies in appropriate environments. We conducted allele competition experiments by crossing two highly related strains of Culex pipiens quinquefasciatus mosquitoes. One strain (ISOP450) was permethrin resistant (due to P450-mediated detoxification) and one was a susceptible strain. Allele and genotype frequencies were examined for 12 generations under three environmental conditions: standard laboratory, temephos exposure (an insecticide to which the P450 detoxification mechanism in ISOP450 confers no resistance and which is commonly used in mosquito control programs) and cold temperature stress (mimics the colder temperatures within the habitat of this mosquito).
A fitness cost was inferred for the P450 mechanism in the standard laboratory environment. A greater cost was associated with the temephos exposed environment, suggesting the temephos placed an additional stress on the P450 resistant mosquitoes. No observed cost was associated with the P450 resistance locus in the cold temperature environment, but there was a significant heterozygote advantage. In all environments the fitness of the resistant homozygotes was the lowest.
The cytochrome P450-mediated permethrin detoxification resistance in Cx. p. quinquefasciatus can have an associated fitness cost in the absence of permethrin, relative to a susceptible allele. The strength of the cost varies depending on the environmental conditions. P450-mediated resistance is expected to decrease over time if the permethrin application is relaxed and to decrease at an even faster rate if permethrin is replaced with temephos. Additionally, these results indicate that a P450 resistance allele can persist (especially in heterozygotes) in colder temperatures and could potentially be carried into the Culex pipiens hybrid zone.
Most of sequenced West Nile virus (WNV) genomes encode a single N-linked glycosylation site on their envelope (E) proteins. We previously found that WNV lacking the E protein glycan was severely inhibited in its ability to replicate and spread within two important mosquito vector species, Culex pipiens and Cx. tarsalis. However, recent work with a closely related species, Cx. pipiens pallens, found no association between E protein glycosylation and either replication or dissemination. To examine this finding further, we expanded upon our previous studies to include an additional Culex species, Cx. quinquefasciatus. The non-glycosylated WNV-N154I virus replicated less efficiently in mosquito tissues after intrathoracic inoculation, but there was little difference in replication efficiency in the midgut after peroral infection. Interestingly, although infectivity was inhibited when WNV lacked the E protein glycan, there was little difference in viral spread throughout the mosquito. These data indicate that E protein glycosylation affects WNV–vector interactions in a species-specific manner.
Two novel crystal protein genes, cry30Ba and cry44Aa, were cloned from Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. entomocidus INA288 and expressed in an acrystalliferous strain. Cry44Aa crystals were highly toxic to second-instar Culex pipiens pallens (50% mortality concentration [LC50] = 6 ng/ml) and Aedes aegypti (LC50 = 12 ng/ml); however, Cry30Ba crystals were not toxic.
Mosquitoes in the Culex pipiens complex are important vectors of several disease-causing pathogens, including West Nile virus. In North America, the complex consists of Cx. pipiens pipiens form pipiens, Cx. pipiens pipiens form molestus, Cx. pipiens quinquefasciatus, and their hybrids that exhibit substantial diversity in physiology, behavior, and geographic range. Hybridization among these mosquitoes is of concern because of potential implications for disease transmission. Currently, several morphological and molecular markers exist for differentiating members of the Cx. pipiens complex; however, these markers have specific limitations. We report here two highly reliable ribosomal DNA-based single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers, CxpG2T and CxpA2d, for detecting Cx. pipiens complex mosquitoes containing Cx. p. quinquefasciatus alleles. Both CxpG2T and CxpA2d contain one allele that is present in all members of the Cx. pipiens complex, and the other allele is specific to Cx. p. quinquefasciatus. Testing of field populations from the eastern United States showed that these two SNP markers are capable of identifying a south to north gradient of Cx. p. quinquefasciatus and hybrids. The northern limit of detection of Cx. p. quinquefasciatus alleles in this study was in Fort Totten, NY (40.79°N), whereas the southern boundary was determined between Atlanta, GA (33.81°N) and Gainesville, FL (29.64°N). CxpG2T and CxpA2d were more accurate than the ACE-2 marker, and they may conceivably provide comparable resolution with microsatellite markers for detecting Cx. p. quinquefasciatus alleles.
To gain valuable insights into the gene interaction and the complex regulation system involved in the development of insecticide resistance in mosquitoes Culex quinquefasciatus, we conducted a whole transcriptome analysis of Culex mosquitoes following permethrin selection. Gene expression profiles for the lower resistant parental mosquito strain HAmCqG0 and their permethrin-selected high resistant offspring HAmCqG8 were compared and a total of 367 and 3982 genes were found to be up- and down-regulated, respectively, in HAmCqG8, indicating that multiple genes are involved in response to permethrin selection. However, a similar overall cumulative gene expression abundance was identified between up- and down-regulated genes in HAmCqG8 mosquitoes following permethrin selection, suggesting a homeostatic response to insecticides through a balancing of the up- and down-regulation of the genes. While structural and/or cuticular structural functions were the only two enriched GO terms for down-regulated genes, the enriched GO terms obtained for the up-regulated genes occurred primarily among the catalytic and metabolic functions where they represented three functional categories: electron carrier activity, binding, and catalytic activity. Interestingly, the functional GO terms in these three functional categories were overwhelmingly overrepresented in P450s and proteases/serine proteases. The important role played by P450s in the development of insecticide resistance has been extensively studied but the function of proteases/serine proteases in resistance is less well understood. Hence, the characterization of the functions of these proteins, including their digestive, catalytic and proteinase activities; regulation of signaling transduction and protein trafficking, immunity and storage; and their precise function in the development of insecticide resistance in mosquitoes will provide new insights into how genes are interconnected and regulated in resistance.
Insecticide resistance genes have developed in a wide variety of insects in response to heavy chemical application. Few of these examples of adaptation in response to rapid environmental change have been studied both at the population level and at the gene level. One of these is the evolution of the overproduced esterases that are involved in resistance to organophosphate insecticides in the mosquito Culex pipiens. At the gene level, two genetic mechanisms are involved in esterase overproduction, namely gene amplification and gene regulation. At the population level, the co-occurrence of the same amplified allele in distinct geographic areas is best explained by the importance of passive transportation at the worldwide scale. The long-term monitoring of a population of mosquitoes in southern France has enabled a detailed study to be made of the evolution of resistance genes on a local scale, and has shown that a resistance gene with a lower cost has replaced a former resistance allele with a higher cost.
Target site insensitivity resulting from point mutations within the voltage-gated sodium channel of the insect nervous system is known to be of primary importance in the development of resistance to pyrethroid insecticides. This study shifts current research paradigms by conducting, for the first time, a global analysis of all the naturally occurring mutations, both nonsynonymous and synonymous mutations, as well as mutation combinations in the entire mosquito sodium channel of Culex quinquefasciatus and analyzing their evolutionary and heritable feature and roles in insecticide resistance. Through a systematic analysis of comparing nucleotide polymorphisms in the entire sodium channel cDNAs of individuals between susceptible and resistant mosquito strains, between field parental mosquitoes and their permethrin selected offspring, and among different mosquito groups categorized by their levels of tolerance to specific permethrin concentrations within and among the mosquito strains of the field parental strains and their permethrin selected offspring, 3 nonsynonymous (A109S, L982F, and W1573R) and 6 synonymous (L852, G891, A1241, D1245, P1249, and G1733) mutations were identified. The co-existence of all 9 mutations, both nonsynonymous and synonymous, and their homozygousity were found to be important factors for high levels of resistance. Our study, for the first time, provide a strong case demonstrating the co-existence of both nonsynonymous and synonymous mutations in the sodium channel of resistant mosquitoes in response to insecticide resistance and the inheritance of these mutations in the offspring of field mosquito strains following insecticide selection.
Culex salinarius is a bridge vector to humans, while Cx. pipiens and Cx. restuans are more efficient enzootic vectors.
To evaluate the role of Culex mosquitoes as enzootic and epidemic vectors for WNV, we identified the source of vertebrate blood by polymerase chain reaction amplification and sequencing portions of the cytochrome b gene of mitochondrial DNA. All Cx. restuans and 93% of Cx. pipiens acquired blood from avian hosts; Cx. salinarius fed frequently on both mammals (53%) and birds (36%). Mixed-blood meals were detected in 11% and 4% of Cx. salinarius and Cx. pipiens, respectively. American robin was the most common source of vertebrate blood for Cx. pipiens (38%) and Cx. restuans (37%). American crow represented <1% of the blood meals in Cx. pipiens and none in Cx. restuans. Human-derived blood meals were identified from 2 Cx. salinarius and 1 Cx. pipiens. Results suggest that Cx. salinarius is an important bridge vector to humans, while Cx. pipiens and Cx. restuans are more efficient enzootic vectors in the northeastern United States.
Blood feeding pattern; Mosquitoes; Culex pipiens; Culex restuans; Culex salinarius; Bridge vector; Turdus migratorius; Odocoileus virginianus; West Nile virus; Cytochrome b gene
Culex spp. mosquitoes are considered to be the most important vectors of West Nile virus (WNV) detected in at least 34 species of mosquitoes in the United States. In North America, Culex pipiens pipiens, Culex pipiens quinquefasciatus, and Culex tarsalis are all competent vectors of WNV, which is considered to be enzootic in the United States and has also been detected in equines and birds in many states of Mexico and in humans in Nuevo Leon. There is potential for WNV to be introduced into Mexico City by various means including infected mosquitoes on airplanes, migrating birds, ground transportation and infected humans. Little is known of the geographic distribution of Culex pipiens complex mosquitoes and hybrids in Mexico City. Culex pipiens pipiens preferentially feed on avian hosts; Culex pipiens quinquefasciatus have historically been considered to prefer mammalian hosts; and hybrids of these two species could theoretically serve as bridge vectors to transmit WNV from avian hosts to humans and other mammalian hosts. In order to address the potential of WNV being introduced into Mexico City, we have determined the identity and spatial distribution of Culex pipiens complex mosquitoes and their hybrids.
Mosquito larvae collected from 103 sites throughout Mexico City during 2004-2005 were identified as Culex, Culiseta or Ochlerotatus by morphological analysis. Within the genus Culex, specimens were further identified as Culex tarsalis or as belonging to the Culex pipiens complex. Members of the Culex pipiens complex were separated by measuring the ratio of the dorsal and ventral arms (DV/D ratio) of the male genitalia and also by using diagnostic primers designed for the Ace.2 gene. Culex pipiens quinquefasciatus was the most abundant form collected.
Important WNV vectors species, Cx. p. pipiens, Cx. p. quinquefasciatus and Cx. tarsalis, are all present in Mexico City. Hybrids of Cx. p. pipiens and Cx. p. quinquefasciatus were also collected and identified. The presence and abundance of these WNV competent vectors is a cause for concern. Understanding the distribution of these vectors can help improve viral surveillance activities and mosquito control efforts in Mexico City.
Mosquitoes in the Culex pipiens complex are among the most medically important vectors for human disease worldwide and include major vectors for lymphatic filariasis and West Nile virus transmission. However, detailed genetic studies in the complex are limited by the number of genetic markers available. Here, we describe methods for the rapid and efficient identification and development of single locus, highly polymorphic microsatellite markers for Cx. pipiens complex mosquitoes via in silico screening of the Cx. quinquefasciatus genome sequence.
Six lab colonies representing four Cx. pipiens and two Cx. quinquefasciatus populations were utilized for preliminary assessment of 38 putative loci identified within 16 Cx. quinquefasciatus supercontig assemblies (CpipJ1) containing previously mapped genetic marker sequences. We identified and validated 12 new microsatellite markers distributed across all three linkage groups that amplify consistently among strains representing the complex. We also developed four groups of 3–5 microsatellite loci each for multiplex-ready PCR. Field collections from three cities in Indiana were used to assess the multiplex groups for their application to natural populations. All were highly polymorphic (Mean = 13.0 alleles) per locus and reflected high polymorphism information content (PIC) (Mean = 0.701). Pairwise FST indicated population structuring between Terre Haute and Fort Wayne and between Terre Haute and Indianapolis, but not between Fort Wayne and Indianapolis. In addition, we performed whole genome comparisons of microsatellite motifs and abundance between Cx. quinquefasciatus and the primary vectors for dengue virus and malaria parasites, Aedes aegypti and Anopheles gambiae, respectively.
We demonstrate a systematic approach for isolation and validation of microsatellites for the Cx. pipiens complex by direct screen of the Cx. quinquefasciatus genome supercontig assemblies. The genome density of microsatellites is greater in Cx. quinquefasciatus (0.26%) than in Ae. aegypti (0.14%), but considerably lower than in An. gambiae (0.77%).
Wolbachia symbionts are responsible for various alterations in host reproduction. The effects of the host genome on endosymbiont levels have often been suggested, but rarely described. Here, we show that Wolbachia density is strongly modified by the presence of insecticide-resistant genes in the common house mosquito, Culex pipiens. The Wolbachia density was estimated using a real-time quantitative PCR assay. Strains harbouring different genes conferring resistance were more infected than a susceptible strain with the same genetic background. We show that this interaction also operates in natural populations. We propose that mosquitoes may control Wolbachia density less efficiently when they carry an insecticide-resistant gene, i.e. when they suffer from a physiological resistance cost.
Reproductive incompatibilities called cytoplasmic incompatibilities are known to affect a large number of arthropod species and are mediated by Wolbachia, a maternally transmitted microorganism. The crossing relationships between strains of potential hosts define their incompatibility types and it is generally assumed that differences between strains of Wolbachia induce different crossing types. Among all the described host species, the mosquito, Culex pipiens, displays the greatest variability of cytoplasmic incompatibility crossing types. We analysed mitochondrial and bacterial DNA variability in Culex pipiens in order to investigate some possible causes of incompatibility crossing type variability. We sequenced fragments of the ftsZ gene, and the A + T-rich control region of the mtDNA. We also sequenced the second subunit of the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase (COII) gene, in Culex pipiens and a closely related species, C. torrentium, in order to verify the usefulness of the A + T-rich region for the present purposes. No variability was found in the Wolbachia ftsZ gene fragment, and very limited variation of the mitochondrial marker whatever the compatibility type or the origin of the host. A low variability was found in the A + T-rich region and comparison of divergence of the A + T-rich region and COII gene between C. pipiens and C. torrentium did not reveal any special constraints affecting this region. In contrast to observations in other host species, variability of incompatibility crossing types is not due to multiple infections by distantly related Wolbachia strains.
An investigation was conducted to identify the distribution of mosquitoes and mosquito-borne arboviruses in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, China from July to August in 2007. A total of 8,147 mosquitoes representing six species from three genera (Aedes, Culex, and Anopheles) were collected in three locations (Geermu city, altitude of 2,780 m; Xining city, 2,200 m; Minhe county, 1,700 m). Six virus isolates were obtained including Tahyna virus (TAHV), Liaoning virus, and Culex pipiens pallens Densovirus. A serosurvey showed immunoglobulin G antibodies by immunofluorescence assay (IFA) against TAHV in residents of all three locations. The IFA-positive human samples were confirmed by 90% plaque-reduction neutralization tests (PRNT90) against TAHV with titers ranging from 1:20 to 1:10,240. In addition, TAHV seropositive cows, sheep, and swine were found in these locations. This investigation represents the first isolation of TAHV from Ae. (Och.) detritus and the first evidence of TAHV infection in residents and livestock in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau.
Nonvisual arrestins are a family of multifunctional adaptor molecules that regulate the activities of diverse families of receptors including G protein–coupled receptors, frizzled, and transforming growth factor-β receptors. These activities indicate broad roles in both physiology and development for nonvisual arrestins. Drosophila melanogaster has a single nonvisual arrestin, kurtz, which is found at high levels within the adult olfactory receptor neurons (ORNs), suggesting a role for this gene in modulating olfactory sensitivity. Using heat-induced expression of a krz cDNA through development, we rescued krz1 lethality. The resulting adults lacked detectable levels of krz in the olfactory system. The rescued krz1 homozygotes have an incompletely penetrant antennal structural defect that was completely rescued by the neural expression of a krz cDNA. The krz1 loss-of-function adults without visible antennal defects displayed diminished behavioral responsiveness to both aversive and attractive odors and also demonstrated reduced olfactory receptor potentials. Both the behavioral and electrophysiological phenotypes were rescued by the targeted expression of the krz cDNA within postdevelopmental ORNs. Thus, krz is required within the nervous system for antennal development and is required later in the ORNs for the maintenance of olfactory sensitivity in Drosophila. The reduced receptor potentials in krz1 antenna indicate that nonvisual arrestins are required for the early odor-induced signaling events within the ORNs.
adaptation; antenna; arrestin; Drosophila; electroantennogram; olfaction
Appropriate monitoring of vector insecticide susceptibility is required to provide the rationale for optimal insecticide selection in vector control programs.
In order to assess the influence of mosquito age on susceptibility to various insecticides, field-collected larvae of An. gambiae s.l. from Tiassalé were reared to adults. Females aged 1, 2, 3, 5 and 10 days were exposed to 5 insecticides (deltamethrin, permethrin, DDT, malathion and propoxur) using WHO susceptibility test kits. Outcome measures included the LT50 (exposure time required to achieve 50% knockdown), the RR (resistance ratio, i.e. a calculation of how much more resistant the wild population is compared with a standard susceptible strain) and the mortality rate following 1 hour exposure, for each insecticide and each mosquito age group.
There was a positive correlation between the rate of knockdown and mortality for all the age groups and for all insecticides tested. For deltamethrin, the RR50 was highest for 2 day old and lowest for 10 day old individuals. Overall, mortality was lowest for 2 and 3 day old individuals and significantly higher for 10 day old individuals (P < 0.05). With permethrin, the RR50 was highest for 1 to 3 day old individuals and lowest for 10 day old individuals and mortality was lowest for 1 to 3 day old individuals, intermediate for 5 day old and highest for 10 day old individuals. DDT did not display any knockdown effect and mortality was low for all mosquito age groups (<7%). With malathion, the RR50 was low (1.54 - 2.77) and mortality was high (>93%) for all age groups. With propoxur, no knockdown effect was observed for 1, 2 and 3 day old individuals and a very low level of mortality was observed (< 4%), which was significantly higher for 5 and 10 day old individuals (30%, P < 0.01).
Results indicate that for An. gambiae s.l. adults derived from wild-collected larvae, there was an influence of age on insecticide susceptibility status, with younger individuals (1 to 3 days old) more resistant than older mosquitoes. This indicates that the use of 1 – 2 day old mosquitoes in susceptibility assays as recommended by the WHO should facilitate detection of resistance at the stage where the highest rate of the resistance phenotype is present.
Anopheles gambiae age; Insecticide resistance; Vector control
The obligate intracellular bacterium Wolbachia pipientis strain wPip induces cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI), patterns of crossing sterility, in the Culex pipiens group of mosquitoes. The complete sequence is presented of the 1.48-Mbp genome of wPip which encodes 1386 coding sequences (CDSs), representing the first genome sequence of a B-supergroup Wolbachia. Comparisons were made with the smaller genomes of Wolbachia strains wMel of Drosophila melanogaster, an A-supergroup Wolbachia that is also a CI inducer, and wBm, a mutualist of Brugia malayi nematodes that belongs to the D-supergroup of Wolbachia. Despite extensive gene order rearrangement, a core set of Wolbachia genes shared between the 3 genomes can be identified and contrasts with a flexible gene pool where rapid evolution has taken place. There are much more extensive prophage and ankyrin repeat encoding (ANK) gene components of the wPip genome compared with wMel and wBm, and both are likely to be of considerable importance in wPip biology. Five WO-B–like prophage regions are present and contain some genes that are identical or highly similar in multiple prophage copies, whereas other genes are unique, and it is likely that extensive recombination, duplication, and insertion have occurred between copies. A much larger number of genes encode ankyrin repeat (ANK) proteins in wPip, with 60 present compared with 23 in wMel, many of which are within or close to the prophage regions. It is likely that this pattern is partly a result of expansions in the wPip lineage, due for example to gene duplication, but their presence is in some cases more ancient. The wPip genome underlines the considerable evolutionary flexibility of Wolbachia, providing clear evidence for the rapid evolution of ANK-encoding genes and of prophage regions. This host–Wolbachia system, with its complex patterns of sterility induced between populations, now provides an excellent model for unraveling the molecular systems underlying host reproductive manipulation.
endosymbiont; Wolbachia; mosquito; cytoplasmic incompatibility; prophage; ankyrin
The para-type sodium channel in insects is the primary target of pyrethroid and DDT insecticides. However, modifications in the target protein structure such as point mutations or substitutions, resulting from single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP), cause insensitivity of the insect’s nervous system to pyrethroids and DDT and, in turn, result in insecticide resistance. Among these mutations, substitution of leucine to phenylalanine (L to F) in the 6th segment of domain II (IIS6) has been clearly associated with pyrethroid and DDT resistance in many insect species, including mosquitoes. Here, multiple copies of the sodium channel gene were identified in the mosquito Culex quinquefasciatus by Southern blot analysis and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) analysis. Two genomic DNA fragments of the mosquito sodium channel gene (509 bp and 181 bp) were detected by a single PCR primer pair. Sequence analysis indicated the lack of an intron sequence in the 181 bp sodium channel fragment. Single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) analysis revealed a strong correlation among the frequencies of L-to-F allelic (T) expression at the RNA level, the frequencies and resistance allele (T) at the L-to-F site of the 509 bp genomic DNA fragment, which did include an intron sequence, and the levels of insecticide resistance. Taking together, this study, for the first time, not only revealed multiple copies of the sodium channel gene presented in the Culex mosquito genome but also suggested that the one with the intro sequence may be a functional copy of the sodium channel gene in the Culex mosquitoes. .
Sodium channel; multiple copies; insecticide resistance; Culex quinquefasciatus
Four cytochrome P450 cDNAs, CYP6AA7, CYP9J40, CYP9J34, and CYP9M10, were isolated from mosquitoes, Culex quinquefasciatus. The P450 gene expression and induction by permethrin were compared for three different mosquito populations bearing different resistance phenotypes, ranging from susceptible (S-Lab), through intermediate (HAmCqG0, the field parental population) to highly resistant (HAmCqG8, the 8th generation of permethrin selected offspring of HAmCqG0). A strong correlation was found for P450 gene expression with the levels of resistance and following permethrin selection at the larval stage of mosquitoes, with the highest expression levels identified in HAmCqG8, suggesting the importance of CYP6AA7, CYP9J40, CYP9J34, and CYP9M10 in the permethrin resistance of larva mosquitoes. Only CYP6AA7 showed a significant overexpression in HAmCqG8 adult mosquitoes. Other P450 genes had similar expression levels among the mosquito populations tested, suggesting different P450 genes may be involved in the response to insecticide pressure in different developmental stages. The expression of CYP6AA7, CYP9J34, and CYP9M10 was further induced by permethrin in resistant mosquitoes. Taken together, these results indicate that multiple P450 genes are up-regulated in insecticide resistant mosquitoes through both constitutive overexpression and induction mechanisms, thus increasing the overall expression levels of P450 genes.