The impact of uniform and mixed species blood meals on the fitness of the mosquito vector Anopheles gambiae s.s: does a specialist pay for diversifying its host species diet?

Lyimo, I.N., Keegan, S.P., Ranford-Cartwright, L.C. and Ferguson, H.M. (2012) The impact of uniform and mixed species blood meals on the fitness of the mosquito vector Anopheles gambiae s.s: does a specialist pay for diversifying its host species diet? Journal of Evolutionary Biology, 25(3), pp. 452-460. (doi:10.1111/j.1420-9101.2011.02442.x)

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Abstract

We investigated the fitness consequences of specialization in an organism whose host choice has an immense impact on human health: the African malaria vector Anopheles gambiae s.s. We tested whether this mosquito’s specialism on humans can be attributed to the relative fitness benefits of specialist vs. generalist feeding strategies by contrasting their fecundity and survival on human-only and mixed host diets consisting of blood meals from humans and animals. When given only one blood meal, An. gambiae s.s. survived significantly longer on human and bovine blood, than on canine or avian blood. However, when blood fed repeatedly, there was no evidence that the fitness of An. gambiae s.s. fed a human-only diet was greater than those fed generalist diets. This suggests that the adoption of generalist host feeding strategies in An. gambiae s.s. is not constrained by intraspecific variation in the resource quality of blood from other available host species.

Item Type:Articles
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Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Ranford-Cartwright, Dr Lisa and Ferguson, Dr Heather
Authors: Lyimo, I.N., Keegan, S.P., Ranford-Cartwright, L.C., and Ferguson, H.M.
Subjects:Q Science > QL Zoology
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Biodiversity Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Infection Immunity and Inflammation
Research Group:IBAHCM
Journal Name:Journal of Evolutionary Biology
Journal Abbr.:J. evol. biol.
ISSN:1010-061X
ISSN (Online):1420-9101
Published Online:04 January 2012
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2012 Wiley-Blackwell
First Published:First published in Journal of Evolutionary Biology 2012 25(3):452-460
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
425321A systems biology approach to infectious disease transmission - linking individuals, populations and ecosystemsHeather FergusonBiotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)BB/D020042/1RI BIODIVERSITY ANIMAL HEALTH & COMPMED