Vector Biology Research Program

Cairo, Egypt

Vector Biology Research Program

Cairo, Egypt

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Zayed A.,Cairo University | Zayed A.,Vector Biology Research Program | Soliman M.M.,Cairo University | El-Shazly M.M.,Cairo University
Journal of Medical Entomology | Year: 2013

Susceptibility of Phlebotomus papatasi Scopoli (Diptera: Psychodidae) larvae to the entomopathogenic fungus Metarhizium anisopliae (Metschinkoff) Sorokin (Ma79) (Hypocreales: Clavicipitaceae) was evaluated at two different temperatures. The ability of the fungus to reinfect healthy sand flies was followed up for ≈20 wk and the effect of in vivo repassage on the enhancement of its virulence was assessed. The fungus reduced the adult emergence at 26 ± 1°C when applied to larval diet. Six spore concentrations were used in the bioassays ranging from 1 × 106 to 5 × 10 8 spores/ml. Mortality decreased significantly when the temperature was raised to 31 ± 1°C at all tested concentrations. Fungus-treated vials were assayed against sand fly larvae at different time lapses without additional reapplication of the fungus in the media to determine whether the level of inocula persisting in the media was sufficient to reinfect healthy sand flies. Twenty weeks postapplication, there were still enough infectious propagules of Ma79 to infect 40% of P. papatasi larvae. A comparison between the infectivity of 10 subsequent in vitro cultures and the host-passed inocula of the fungus against sand fly larvae was conducted. Mortalities of P. papatasi larvae changed significantly when exposed to inocula passed through different insects. Presented data can provide vector control decision makers and end users with fundamental information for the introduction and application of M. anisopliae as an effective control agent against the main cutaneous leishmaniasis old-world vector P. papatasi. © 2013 Entomological Society of America.


Zayed A.,Vector Biology Research Program | Awash A.A.,Ministry of Public Health and Population | Esmail M.A.,Ministry of Public Health and Population | Al-Mohamadi H.A.,Ministry of Public Health and Population | And 5 more authors.
Acta Tropica | Year: 2012

In October 2010, the Ministry of Public Health and Population reported an outbreak of dengue-like acute febrile illness in Al Hodayda governorate. By January 2011, a total of 1542 cases had been recorded from 19 of the 26 districts in the governorate with 104 purportedly associated deaths. In response this event, in January 2011 entomological investigations aimed at identifying the primary vector and the epidemic associated etiological agent were carried out. Based on the reported cases and the progress of the outbreak in the governorate, mosquito collection was undertaken in two of the most recent outbreak areas; Al Khokha district (130. km south of Al Hodayda) and Al Muneera district (100. km north). Mosquito adults were collected from houses using BG-sentinel™ traps, aspiration of resting mosquitoes and knock-down spraying. Indoor and outdoor containers adjacent to the houses were inspected for larvae. Subsequently mosquito pools were analyzed by RT-PCR for detection of the four dengue virus serotypes (DENV-1, DENV-2, DENV-3, DENV-4), and for Chikungunya virus (CHIKV). Aedes aegypti was the dominant mosquito species collected. Four pools represent 40% of the tested pools, all containing adult female Ae. aegypti, were positive for CHIKV. Three CHIKV isolates were obtained from the RNA positive mosquito pools and identified by rRT-PCR. This finding marks the first record of CHIKV isolated from Ae. aegypti in Yemen. The larval container and Breteau indices in the visited localities surveyed were estimated at 53.8 and 100, respectively. The emergence of this unprecedented CHIKV epidemic in Al Hodayda is adding up another arboviral burden to the already existing vector-borne diseases. Considering the governorate as one focal port in the Red Sea region, the spread of the disease to other areas in Yemen and in neighboring countries is anticipated. Public health education and simple measures to detect and prevent mosquito breeding in water storage containers could prevent and reduce the spread of mosquito-borne viruses like CHIKV and DENV in Yemen. © 2012.


Fawaz E.Y.,Vector Biology Research Program | Allan S.A.,U.S. Department of Agriculture | Bernier U.R.,U.S. Department of Agriculture | Obenauer P.J.,U.S. Navy | Diclaro J.W.,Vector Biology Research Program
Journal of Vector Ecology | Year: 2014

Mosquitoes of various species mate in swarms comprised of tens of thousands of flying males. In this study, we examined Aedes aegypti swarming behavior and identified associated chemical cues. Novel evidence is provided that Ae. aegypti females aggregate by means of olfactory cues, such as aggregation pheromones. Isolation of Ae. aegypti aggregation pheromones was achieved by aeration of confined mosquitoes and collection of associated volatiles by glass filters. The collected volatiles were identified through gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GCMS). Three aggregation pheromones were collected and identified as 2,6,6-trimethylcyclohex-2-ene-1,4-dione (ketoisophorone) (CAS# 1125-21-9, tR = 18.75), 2,2,6-trimethylcyclohexane-1,4-dione (the saturated analog of ketoisophorone) (CAS# 20547-99-3, tR = 20.05), and 1-(4-ethylphenyl) ethanone (CAS# 937-30-4, tR = 24.22). Our biological studies revealed that the identified compounds stimulated mosquito behavior under laboratory conditions. The mechanism of mosquito swarm formation is discussed in light of our behavioral study findings. A preliminary field trial demonstrated the potential application of the isolated aggregation pheromones in controlling Ae. aegypti. © 2014.


Horton K.C.,Centers for Disease Control and Prevention | Fahmy N.T.,Vector Biology Research Program | Watany N.,Vector Biology Research Program | Zayed A.,Vector Biology Research Program | And 4 more authors.
Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases | Year: 2016

Crimean Congo hemorrhagic fever virus and Alkhumra virus, not previously reported in Djibouti, were detected among 141 (infection rate = 15.7 per 100, 95% CI: 13.4-18.1) tick pools from 81 (37%) cattle and 2 (infection rate = 0.2 per 100, 95% CI: 0.0-0.7) tick pools from 2 (1%) cattle, respectively, collected at an abattoir in 2010 and 2011. © Copyright 2016, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. 2016.


Fawaz E.Y.,Vector Biology Research Program | Allan S.A.,Vector Biology Research Program | Bernier U.R.,Vector Biology Research Program | Obenauer P.J.,Vector Biology Research Program | Diclaro J.W.,Vector Biology Research Program
Journal of vector ecology : journal of the Society for Vector Ecology | Year: 2014

Mosquitoes of various species mate in swarms comprised of tens of thousands of flying males. In this study, we examined Aedes aegypti swarming behavior and identified associated chemical cues. Novel evidence is provided that Ae. aegypti females aggregate by means of olfactory cues, such as aggregation pheromones. Isolation of Ae. aegypti aggregation pheromones was achieved by aeration of confined mosquitoes and collection of associated volatiles by glass filters. The collected volatiles were identified through gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GCMS). Three aggregation pheromones were collected and identified as 2,6,6-trimethylcyclohex-2-ene-1,4-dione (ketoisophorone) (CAS# 1125-21-9, t(R) = 18.75), 2,2,6-trimethylcyclohexane-1,4-dione (the saturated analog of ketoisophorone) (CAS# 20547-99-3, t(R) = 20.05), and 1-(4-ethylphenyl) ethanone (CAS# 937-30-4, t(R) = 24.22). Our biological studies revealed that the identified compounds stimulated mosquito behavior under laboratory conditions. The mechanism of mosquito swarm formation is discussed in light of our behavioral study findings. A preliminary field trial demonstrated the potential application of the isolated aggregation pheromones in controlling Ae. aegypti. © 2014 The Society for Vector Ecology.


PubMed | Vector Biology Research Program, University of Ghana, Vestergaard and Kwame Nkrumah University Of Science And Technology
Type: | Journal: Parasites & vectors | Year: 2016

The increasing spread of insecticide resistance in malaria vectors has been well documented across sub-Saharan Africa countries. The influence of irrigation on increasing vector resistance is poorly understood, and is critical to successful and ethical implementation of food security policies. This study investigated the insecticide resistance status of An. gambiae (s.l.) mosquitoes collected from the irrigated rice area of Okyereko, a village containing about 42 hectares of irrigated field within an irrigation project plan in the Central Region of Ghana. Large amounts of insecticides, herbicides and fertilizers are commonly used in the area to boost the annual production of the rice.Mosquito larvae were collected and adults were assayed from the F1 progeny. The resistance status, allele and genotype were characterized using WHO susceptibility testing and PCR methods respectively.The An. gambiae (s.l.) populations from Okyereko are highly resistant to DDT and pyrethroid insecticides, with possible involvement of metabolic mechanisms including the elevation of P450 and GST enzyme as well as P-gp activity. The population was mostly composed of An. coluzzii specimens (more than 96 %) with kdr and ace-1 frequencies of 0.9 and 0.2 %, respectively.This study brings additional information on insecticide resistance and the characterization of An. gambiae (s.l.) mosquitoes from Okyereko, which can be helpful in decision making for vector control programmes in the region.


PubMed | Global Disease Detection Regional Center, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Naval Medical Research Center, Biological Defense Research Directorate and Vector Biology Research Program
Type: Journal Article | Journal: The American journal of tropical medicine and hygiene | Year: 2016

Of 49 workers at a Djiboutian abattoir, eight (16%, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 9-29) were seropositive against spotted fever group rickettsiae (SFGR), two (4%, 95% CI: 1-14) against typhus group rickettsiae, and three (6%, 95% CI: 2-17) against orientiae. One worker (9%, 95% CI: 2-38) seroconverted against orientiae during the study period. This is the first evidence of orientiae exposure in the Horn of Africa. SFGR were also identified by polymerase chain reaction in 32 of 189 (11%, 95% CI: 8-15) tick pools from 26 of 72 (36%) cattle. Twenty-five (8%, 95% CI: 6-12) tick pools were positive for Rickettsia africae, the causative agent of African tick-bite fever. Health-care providers in Djibouti should be aware of the possibility of rickettsiae infections among patients, although further research is needed to determine the impact of these infections in the country.


PubMed | Vector Biology Research Program
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Journal of medical entomology | Year: 2016

Phlebotomus papatasi is one of the most medically important sand fly species in the Old World, serving as a vector of Leishmania parasites and phleboviruses. Chemical control is still considered the most effective method for rapidly reducing populations of flying insects involved in vector-borne disease transmission, but is increasingly threatened by insecticide resistance in the target insect posing significant problems for entomologists responsible for control programs. This study was conducted to determine pyrethroid resistance mechanisms and the biological, physiological, and molecular impacts of resistance in Ph. papatasi, and to compare their resistance mechanisms against those reported for mosquitoes and other intensely studied dipterans. Field-collected Ph. papatasi from Aswan, Egypt, were subjected to sublethal doses of permethrin and reared as a resistant strain under laboratory conditions through 16 generations. Biological parameter observations of resistant Ph. papatasi revealed an association of resistance with productivity cost. Physiological analysis revealed that concentrations of oxidase and esterase enzymes increased in early generations of the resistant colony, and then subsided through the F16 generation to levels similar to those in a susceptible colony. The activity levels of acetylcholinesterase were higher in field-collected Ph. papatasi than in susceptible colony flies, but decreased significantly despite subsequent exposure to permethrin. The molecular search for gene mutations in the resistant strain of Ph. papatasi failed to identify any mutations common in pyrethroid-resistant mosquitoes. Our study revealed that the mechanism of pyrethroid resistance in sand flies is different than that in mosquitoes, at least at the genetic level.


PubMed | Vector Biology Research Program
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Acta tropica | Year: 2012

In October 2010, the Ministry of Public Health and Population reported an outbreak of dengue-like acute febrile illness in Al Hodayda governorate. By January 2011, a total of 1542 cases had been recorded from 19 of the 26 districts in the governorate with 104 purportedly associated deaths. In response this event, in January 2011 entomological investigations aimed at identifying the primary vector and the epidemic associated etiological agent were carried out. Based on the reported cases and the progress of the outbreak in the governorate, mosquito collection was undertaken in two of the most recent outbreak areas; Al Khokha district (130km south of Al Hodayda) and Al Muneera district (100km north). Mosquito adults were collected from houses using BG-sentinel traps, aspiration of resting mosquitoes and knock-down spraying. Indoor and outdoor containers adjacent to the houses were inspected for larvae. Subsequently mosquito pools were analyzed by RT-PCR for detection of the four dengue virus serotypes (DENV-1, DENV-2, DENV-3, DENV-4), and for Chikungunya virus (CHIKV). Aedes aegypti was the dominant mosquito species collected. Four pools represent 40% of the tested pools, all containing adult female Ae. aegypti, were positive for CHIKV. Three CHIKV isolates were obtained from the RNA positive mosquito pools and identified by rRT-PCR. This finding marks the first record of CHIKV isolated from Ae. aegypti in Yemen. The larval container and Breteau indices in the visited localities surveyed were estimated at 53.8 and 100, respectively. The emergence of this unprecedented CHIKV epidemic in Al Hodayda is adding up another arboviral burden to the already existing vector-borne diseases. Considering the governorate as one focal port in the Red Sea region, the spread of the disease to other areas in Yemen and in neighboring countries is anticipated. Public health education and simple measures to detect and prevent mosquito breeding in water storage containers could prevent and reduce the spread of mosquito-borne viruses like CHIKV and DENV in Yemen.


PubMed | Central Michigan University, Jordan University of Science and Technology, Kansas State University, University of Notre Dame and 5 more.
Type: | Journal: Parasites & vectors | Year: 2015

The Phlebotomus papatasi salivary protein PpSP15 was shown to protect mice against Leishmania major, suggesting that incorporation of salivary molecules in multi-component vaccines may be a viable strategy for anti-Leishmania vaccines.Here, we investigated PpSP15 predicted amino acid sequence variability and mRNA profile of P. papatasi field populations from the Middle East. In addition, predicted MHC class II T-cell epitopes were obtained and compared to areas of amino acid sequence variability within the secreted protein.The analysis of PpSP15 expression from field populations revealed significant intra- and interpopulation variation.. In spite of the variability detected for P. papatasi populations, common epitopes for MHC class II binding are still present and may potentially be used to boost the response against Le. major infections.Conserved epitopes of PpSP15 could potentially be used in the development of a salivary gland antigen-based vaccine.

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