The reproductive tracts of two malaria vectors are populated by a core microbiome and by gender- and swarm-enriched microbial biomarkers

Segata, N., Baldini, F., Pompon, J., Garrett, W. S., TinTruong, D., Dabiré, R. K., Diabaté, A., Levashina, E. and Catteruccia, F. (2016) The reproductive tracts of two malaria vectors are populated by a core microbiome and by gender- and swarm-enriched microbial biomarkers. Scientific Reports, 6, 24207. (doi:10.1038/srep24207) (PMID:27086581)

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Abstract

Microbes play key roles in shaping the physiology of insects and can influence behavior, reproduction and susceptibility to pathogens. In Sub-Saharan Africa, two major malaria vectors, Anopheles gambiae and An. coluzzii, breed in distinct larval habitats characterized by different microorganisms that might affect their adult physiology and possibly Plasmodium transmission. We analyzed the reproductive microbiomes of male and female An. gambiae and An. coluzzii couples collected from natural mating swarms in Burkina Faso. 16S rRNA sequencing on dissected tissues revealed that the reproductive tracts harbor a complex microbiome characterized by a large core group of bacteria shared by both species and all reproductive tissues. Interestingly, we detected a significant enrichment of several gender-associated microbial biomarkers in specific tissues, and surprisingly, similar classes of bacteria in males captured from one mating swarm, suggesting that these males originated from the same larval breeding site. Finally, we identified several endosymbiotic bacteria, including Spiroplasma, which have the ability to manipulate insect reproductive success. Our study provides a comprehensive analysis of the reproductive microbiome of important human disease vectors, and identifies a panel of core and endosymbiotic bacteria that can be potentially exploited to interfere with the transmission of malaria parasites by the Anopheles mosquito.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Baldini, Dr Francesco
Authors: Segata, N., Baldini, F., Pompon, J., Garrett, W. S., TinTruong, D., Dabiré, R. K., Diabaté, A., Levashina, E., and Catteruccia, F.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Biodiversity Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
Journal Name:Scientific Reports
Publisher:Nature Publishing Group
ISSN:2045-2322
ISSN (Online):2045-2322
Published Online:18 April 2016
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2016 The Authors
First Published:First published in Scientific Reports 6:24207
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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