Jason L. Rasgon

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Before maternally inherited bacterial symbionts like Wolbachia, which cause cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI; reduced hatch rate) when infected males mate with uninfected females, can be used in a program to control vector-borne diseases it is essential to understand their dynamics of infection in natural arthropod vector populations. Our study had four(More)
Comparisons of five morphological characters, 12 enzyme electrophoresis profiles, and Wolbachia pipientis infection rates were used to characterize populations of members of the Culex pipiens L. complex in California and South Africa. In South Africa, male phallosome DV/D ratio, male maxillary palp index, branching of siphonal seta 1a, the enzyme locus(More)
Endosymbiotic Wolbachia bacteria are potent modulators of pathogen infection and transmission in multiple naturally and artificially infected insect species, including important vectors of human pathogens. Anopheles mosquitoes are naturally uninfected with Wolbachia, and stable artificial infections have not yet succeeded in this genus. Recent techniques(More)
Altered patterns of malaria endemicity reflect, in part, changes in feeding behavior and climate adaptation of mosquito vectors. Aquaporin (AQP) water channels are found throughout nature and confer high-capacity water flow through cell membranes. The genome of the major malaria vector mosquito Anopheles gambiae contains at least seven putative AQP(More)
Insecticide resistance and absence of clinical cures or vaccines for many vector-borne diseases has stimulated interest in using genetically modified arthropod vectors for disease control. Current transgenic strategies focus on vector susceptibility to pathogen infection, which is an inefficient target for pathogen transmission interference. Manipulation of(More)
Novel strategies are required to control mosquitoes and the pathogens they transmit. One attractive approach involves maternally inherited endosymbiotic Wolbachia bacteria. After artificial infection with Wolbachia, many mosquitoes become refractory to infection and transmission of diverse pathogens. We evaluated the effects of Wolbachia (wAlbB strain) on(More)
The introduction of genes that impair Plasmodium development into mosquito populations is a strategy being considered for malaria control. The effect of the transgene on mosquito fitness is a crucial parameter influencing the success of this approach. We have previously shown that anopheline mosquitoes expressing the SM1 peptide in the midgut lumen are(More)
Wolbachia, a common bacterial endosymbiont of insects, has been shown to protect its hosts against a wide range of pathogens. However, not all strains exert a protective effect on their host. Here we assess the effects of two divergent Wolbachia strains, wAlbB from Aedes albopictus and wMelPop from Drosophila melanogaster, on the vector competence of(More)
Paratransgenesis, the genetic manipulation of insect symbiotic microorganisms, is being considered as a potential method to control vector-borne diseases such as malaria. The feasibility of paratransgenic malaria control has been hampered by the lack of candidate symbiotic microorganisms for the major vector Anopheles gambiae. In other systems,(More)
Wolbachia pipientis is an obligate intracellular bacterium found in a wide range of invertebrate taxa. While over ecological timescales Wolbachia infections are maintained by strict maternal inheritance, horizontal transfer events are common over evolutionary time. To be horizontally transferred between organisms, Wolbachia bacteria must pass through and(More)