Microorganism-mediated behaviour of malaria mosquitoes

Promovendus ms. AO (Annette) Busula
Promotor Willem W (Willem) Takken
Copromotor JG (Jetske) de Boer
Organisatie Wageningen University & Research, Wageningen Plant Research, Laboratorium voor Entomologie

wo 17 mei 2017 11:00 tot 12:30

Locatie Aula, gebouwnummer 362


My PhD thesis has shown that:

  1. mosquitoes with different host preferences respond differently to smell from humans and animals (vertebrate hosts). Bacteria found on the skin of vertebrate hosts influence the interaction between these hosts and different mosquito species,
  2. natural infection with high densities of microscopic gametocytes (the malaria parasite stage infectious to mosquito vectors) increases attractiveness of human hosts to malaria mosquitoes and,
  3. body odour of malaria-infected humans partially increases their attractiveness to malaria vectors.

Future research should focus on improvement of mosquito lures blend or development of a synthetic odour blend from attractive compounds of skin bacteria identified from different host species, parasite-free humans, carriers of asexual parasite stages (non-infectious parasite stage) and gametocyte carriers. Improved odour blends may be used as a strategy for control of insects transmitting malaria and other vector-borne diseases.