Blood meal induced regulation of the chemosensory gene repertoire in the southern house mosquito

  • T. Taparia (Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU) (Creator)
  • Rickard Ignell (Creator)
  • Sharon Rose Hill (Creator)



Background The southern house mosquito, Culex quinquefasciatus, is one of the most prevalent vectors of lymphatic filariasis and flavivirus-induced encephalitis. Its vectorial capacity is directly affected by its reproductive feeding behaviors, such as host seeking, blood feeding, resting, and egg laying. In mosquitoes, these gonotrophic behaviors are odor-mediated and regulated following blood feeding. Immediately after a blood meal, female mosquitoes show reduced olfactory responsiveness and flight activity, as they enter a resting state. Insights into antennal chemosensory gene regulation at this time period can provide a foundation to identify targets involved in the state switch between host seeking and resting. Results This study used quantitative gene expression analyses to explore blood meal induced regulation of chemosensory gene families in the antennae of 6 days post-emergence C. quinquefasciatus females. Improved annotations for multiple chemosensory gene families, and a quantitative differential gene expression analysis between host seeking and 24 h post- blood fed females of the same age, allowed for the detection of transcripts that potentially play a role in the switch from host seeking to resting, in C. quinquefasciatus. The expression profiles of chemosensory genes varied significantly between the two treatments. Conclusions Annotations for chemosensory gene repertoires in C. quinquefasciatus have been manually curated and corrected for 3’ exon choice and transcript length, through sequence and transcriptome analyses. The gene expression analyses identified various molecular components of the peripheral olfactory system in C. quinquefasciatus, including odorant receptors, ionotropic receptors, odorant binding proteins and chemosensory proteins, that are regulated in response to blood feeding, and could be critical for the behavioral switch from host seeking to resting. Functional characterization of these proteins in the future can identify targets essential for the females’ gonotrophic behaviors, and can be used to design novel vector control strategies.
Date made available19 May 2017
PublisherSwedish University of Agriculture Sciences

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