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Phenotypic dissection of a Plasmodium-refractory strain of malaria vector Anopheles stephensi: the reduced susceptibility to P. berghei and P. yoelii

Phenotypic dissection of a Plasmodium-refractory strain of malaria vector Anopheles stephensi: the reduced susceptibility to P. berghei and P. yoelii

Plos one 8(5): E63753

Anopheline mosquitoes are the major vectors of human malaria. Parasite-mosquito interactions are a critical aspect of disease transmission and a potential target for malaria control. Current investigations into parasite-mosquito interactions frequently assume that genetically resistant and susceptible mosquitoes exist in nature. Therefore, comparisons between the Plasmodium susceptibility profiles of different mosquito species may contribute to a better understanding of vectorial capacity. Anopheles stephensi is an important malaria vector in central and southern Asia and is widely used as a laboratory model of parasite transmission due to its high susceptibility to Plasmodium infection. In the present study, we identified a rodent malaria-refractory strain of A. stephensi mysorensis (Ehime) by comparative study of infection susceptibility. A very low number of oocysts develop in Ehime mosquitoes infected with P. berghei and P. yoelii, as determined by evaluation of developed oocysts on the basal lamina. A stage-specific study revealed that this reduced susceptibility was due to the impaired formation of ookinetes of both Plasmodium species in the midgut lumen and incomplete crossing of the midgut epithelium. There were no apparent abnormalities in the exflagellation of male parasites in the ingested blood or the maturation of oocysts after the rounding up of the ookinetes. Overall, these results suggest that invasive-stage parasites are eliminated in both the midgut lumen and epithelium in Ehime mosquitoes by strain-specific factors that remain unknown. The refractory strain newly identified in this report would be an excellent study system for investigations into novel parasite-mosquito interactions in the mosquito midgut.

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Accession: 054972187

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PMID: 23717475

DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0063753

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