Monday, November 17, 2014

A New Way to Combat Arboviruses?

A new study has found a way to potentially “vaccinate” mosquitoes, limiting the vector transmission of arbovirus. Chromobacterium Csp_P was cultured and fed to mosquitos who had already had their natural microbes eliminated by a course of antibiotics. Although many of the mosquitos were killed by the Dengue and Plasmodium falciparum (most deadly parasite for malaria) infected blood, the survivors were less likely to be infected by the pathogens. Chromobacterium Csp_P also inhibited the growth of Dengue and Plasmodium falciparum in vitro, due to compounds the bacteria secretes. The fact that a number of the mosquitos died could give a mutually beneficial effect- which no current malarial or dengue control does, but could potentially lead to favorable selection and rapid evolution.  While this research is still in the early stages and considerable logistical difficulties remain in the implementation of such results, it could make a serious impact on the future of these diseases.

Madeleine Bousquet


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