Emergence of behavioural avoidance strategies of malaria vectors in areas of high LLIN coverage in Tanzania

Kreppel, K.S., Viana, M. , Main, B.J., Johnson, P.C.D. , Govella, N.J., Lee, Y., Maliti, D., Meza, F.C., Lanzaro, G.C. and Ferguson, H.M. (2020) Emergence of behavioural avoidance strategies of malaria vectors in areas of high LLIN coverage in Tanzania. Scientific Reports, 10, 14527. (doi: 10.1038/s41598-020-71187-4) (PMID:32883976) (PMCID:PMC7471940)

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Despite significant reductions in malaria transmission across Africa since 2000, progress is stalling. This has been attributed to the development of insecticide resistance and behavioural adaptations in malaria vectors. Whilst insecticide resistance has been widely investigated, there is poorer understanding of the emergence, dynamics and impact of mosquito behavioural adaptations. We conducted a longitudinal investigation of malaria vector host choice over 3 years and resting behaviour over 4 years following a mass long-lasting insecticidal nets (LLINs) distribution in Tanzania. By pairing observations of mosquito ecology with environmental monitoring, we quantified longitudinal shifts in host-choice and resting behaviour that are consistent with adaptation to evade LLINs. The density of An. funestus s.l., declined significantly through time. In tandem, An. arabiensis and An. funestus s.l. exhibited an increased rate of outdoor relative to indoor resting; with An. arabiensis reducing the proportion of blood meals taken from humans in favour of cattle. By accounting for environmental variation, this study detected clear evidence of intra-specific shifts in mosquito behaviour that could be obscured in shorter-term or temporally-coarse surveys. This highlights the importance of mosquito behavioural adaptations to vector control, and the value of longer-term behavioural studies.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:"The project “Environmental and genetic basis of malaria-transmitting behaviours in Anopheles arabiensis mosquitoes” was funded by the National Institutes of Health under grant agreement R01AI085175-03. KK acknowledges support from the DELTAS Africa Initiative (Afrique One—ASPIRE/ DEL-15-008). MV was funded by a Skills Development Fellowship (MR/N015320/1) awarded jointly by the UK Medical Research Council (MRC) and Department for International Development (DFID) under the MRC/DFID Concordat agreement and is also part of the EDCTP2 programme supported by the European Union."
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Viana, Dr Mafalda and Johnson, Dr Paul and Kreppel, Dr Katharina and Ferguson, Professor Heather
Authors: Kreppel, K.S., Viana, M., Main, B.J., Johnson, P.C.D., Govella, N.J., Lee, Y., Maliti, D., Meza, F.C., Lanzaro, G.C., and Ferguson, H.M.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Biodiversity, One Health & Veterinary Medicine
Journal Name:Scientific Reports
Publisher:Nature Publishing Group
ISSN (Online):2045-2322

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
172685Ecology of insecticide resistant vectors: consequences for the effectiveness of malaria control strategiesMafalda VianaMedical Research Council (MRC)MR/N015320/1Institute of Biodiversity, Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
165372Environmental and genetic basis of malaria transmitting behaviours in Anopheles arabiensis mosquitoesHeather FergusonNational Institutes of Health (NIH)1R01AI085175-01A1 REInstitute of Biodiversity, Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
173142African Science Partnership for Intervention Research Excellence (Afrique One-ASPIRE)Daniel HaydonWellcome Trust (WELLCOTR)107753/B/15/ZInstitute of Biodiversity, Animal Health and Comparative Medicine