Human bloodfeeding by the recently introduced mosquito, aedes japonicus japonicus, and public health implications

Goudarz Molaei, Ary Farajollahi, Jamesina J. Scott, Randy Gaugler, Theodore G. Andreadis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Scopus citations

Abstract

Knowledge of the host-feeding behavior and extent of interactions with human hosts are important in evaluating the role and vector potential of invasive mosquitoes in transmission of native arboviruses. We collected blood-engorged females of the recently established exotic species Aedes japonicus japonicus from sites in New Jersey during 2000 to 2007 and identified the sources of vertebrate blood meals by sequencing portions of the cytochrome b gene of mitochondrial DNA. Over 1/3 (36%, n = 36) of the engorged mosquitoes acquired blood meals from humans. Other mammalian hosts included white-tailed deer (53%), fallow deer (5%), horse (3%), and Virginia opossum (3%). No avian, amphibian, reptilian, or mixed blood meals were identified. Our detection of a comparatively high prevalence of human bloodfeeding in Ae. j. japonicus in association with its local abundance, vector competence, and repeated detection of West Nile virus from field-collected specimens illustrates the potential for this invasive mosquito to serve as a "bridge" vector in transmission of West Nile and other mosquito-borne viruses in North America.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)210-214
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of the American Mosquito Control Association
Volume25
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Insect Science
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

Keywords

  • Aedes japonicus japonicus
  • Arboviruses
  • Bloodfeeding behavior
  • West Nile virus

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