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Research Project: DISCOVERY AND DEVELOPMENT OF CHEMICALS FOR INTEGRATED PEST MANAGEMENT OF BITING ARTHROPODS AND URBAN PESTS

Location: Invasive Insect Biocontrol & Behavior Laboratory

Title: Multiple chemosensory targets for discovery of novel chemicals for disruption of mosquito behavior

Author
item Dickens, Joseph
item Bohbot, Jonathan
item Sparks, Jackson

Submitted to: Antenna
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/18/2014
Publication Date: 1/1/2015
Citation: Dickens, J.C., Bohbot, J.D., Sparks, J.T. 2015. Multiple chemosensory targets for discovery of novel chemicals for disruption of mosquito behavior. Antenna. 39:90-91.

Interpretive Summary: Mosquitoes use visual, chemical and physical cues to locate food sources and mates. Smell receptors located on the antennae and maxillary palps facilitate host orientation from a distance, while taste receptors present on the mouthparts and legs identify essential chemicals involved in host selection and initiation of blood feeding. Here we show that some of the same genes thought to be uniquely involved in smell or taste are expressed in both smell and taste appendages. This gene expression suggests potentially different roles for certain genes depending on where they are expressed and points to the need for an awareness of the location of gene expression when examining behavioral and physiological roles of specific genes. Thus our study provides potential molecular targets involved in multiple mosquito behaviors for use by entomologists and molecular biologists for disruption of mosquito behavior for the protection of humans and animals from these important disease vectors.

Technical Abstract: The yellow-fever mosquito Aedes aegypti is an important vector of diseases including dengue fever, yellow fever, chikungunya and West Nile virus. Olfactory and gustatory signals play important roles in the orientation of female mosquitoes to vertebrate hosts and initiation of blood feeding. Using results of transcriptome analyses, we show that there is significant overlap in the expression of chemosensory gene families among olfactory and gustatory appendages. Odorant receptors (Ors), ionotropic receptors (Irs), gustatory receptors (Grs) and odorant binding proteins (Obps) are all expressed in both an olfactory appendage (the maxillary palps) and gustatory appendages (the labella, and tarsal segments of the pro-, meso- and metathoracic legs). While certain genes are uniquely expressed in a particular appendage, some genes are expressed in all of them (three Irs - Ir8a, Ir25a and Ir76b; two Trps - TrpA1 and Painless; an unnamed pickpocket channel - AAEL008053; a Gr - Gr19c and 18 Obps). This overlapping gene expression suggests multiple roles for genes expressing in both olfactory and gustatory appendages, spotlighting the importance of these considerations when examining the behavioral and physiological roles of specific genes.