The genes involved in mosquito immune responses to parasitic and bacterial infections have been studied extensively, however similar knowledge of vector responses to viruses is limited. Our long-term goal is to use knowledge of mosquito responses to viruses to design novel disease-control methods. This proposed research focuses on the development and usage of whole-genome tiling arrays for analyses of gene expression in the mosquito vector, Aedes aegypti, following infection with arboviruses. The information generated by this study will reveal global and specific responses of mosquitoes to a number of viral pathogens, and provide materials for the development of genetics-based disease control strategies.
The Specific Aims are: i) to design whole-genome tiling arrays containing interrogation probes for the genomes of Ae. aegypti, and the arboviruses, Dengue, Yellow Fever and Chikungunya;2) to identify mosquito protein-coding and noncoding RNAs with altered transcription patterns following infection with viruses and validate their expression profiles by quantitative gene amplification;and 3) to design transgenes expressing reporter molecules under the regulation of virus infection-induced mosquito promoters, and test in vivo the functionality of the control sequences.
Dengue and other arboviruses are transmitted by mosquitoes, and members of the genus Aedes have a major role in the epidemiology of established and newly-emerging pathogens. An understanding of mosquito vector-viral interactions is expected to facilitate control of transmission of existing as well as emerging viral threats to human health.
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