The Asian tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus) is an invasive species and important arbovirus vector that was introduced into the U.S. in the 1980's where it continues to expand its range. Winter temperature is an important constraint to its northward expansion, with potential range limits located between the 0° and -5°C mean cold month isotherm. Connecticut is located within this climatic zone and therefore, Ae. albopictus was monitored statewide to assess its northern range expansion and to delineate where populations can stably persist.

Dengue is the most important arthropod-borne viral infection of humans, it is established in the tropics worldwide, and its geographical expansion is expected to increase due to factors such as modern dynamics of climate change, globalization, travel, trade, poverty, unplanned urbanization, and viral evolution. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 2.5 billion people are at risk of infection, with 50–100 million infections per year.

Original Source

Government-administered adulticiding is frequently conducted in response to dengue transmission worldwide. Anecdotal evidence suggests that spraying may create a “false sense of security” for residents. Our objective was to determine if there was an association between residents’ reporting outdoor spatial insecticide spraying as way to prevent dengue transmission and both their reported frequency of dengue prevention practices and household entomological indices in Hermosillo, Mexico.

Zika is, and will continue to be, a disease of the urban poor. Slum-defining characteristics—poor water and sanitation infrastructure, crowding, and poor structural quality of housing—offer ample opportunities for mosquitoes to breed and spread the Zika virus. It was recently estimated that 1.6 million childbearing women and 93 million people will be infected in the Americas’ first epidemic wave. From this reservoir of infections, the world is witnessing the largest epidemic ever of a congenital complication—microcephaly.

Chikungunya virus is a mosquito-borne alphavirus which causes an acute febrile illness associated with polyarthralgia. Beginning in August 2013, clinicians from the Yap State Department of Health in the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) identified an unusual cluster of illness which was subsequently confirmed to be chikungunya virus disease. Chikungunya virus disease previously had not been recognized in FSM.

Original Source

Japanese encephalitis (JE) virus (JEV) causes severe epidemic encephalitis across Asia, for which the live attenuated vaccine SA14-14-2 is being used increasingly. JEV is a flavivirus, and is closely related to dengue virus (DENV), which is co-endemic in many parts of Asia, with clinically relevant interactions. There is no information on the human T cell response to SA14-14-2, or whether responses to SA14-14-2 cross-react with DENV.

Progress towards the elimination of a neglected tropical disease from a country can sometimes be a curse, especially when policymakers are confronted with competing needs and priorities. This could mistakenly be interpreted as though the disease has been eradicated, resulting in the limited resources becoming redirected to the next priority, sometimes leaving unfinished agendas. Much depends on whether the long term is considered in the elimination agenda and whether contingency plans are in place should the disease re-emerge as a public health problem.

We have examined the remains of a Pilgrim burial from St Mary Magdalen, Winchester. The individual was a young adult male, aged around 18–25 years at the time of death. Radiocarbon dating showed the remains dated to the late 11th–early 12th centuries, a time when pilgrimages were at their height in Europe. Several lines of evidence in connection with the burial suggested this was an individual of some means and prestige. Although buried within the leprosarium cemetery, the skeleton showed only minimal skeletal evidence for leprosy, which was confined to the bones of the feet and legs.

We have developed genetically modified Ae. aegypti mosquitoes that activate the conserved antiviral JAK/STAT pathway in the fat body tissue, by overexpressing either the receptor Dome or the Janus kinase Hop by the blood feeding-induced vitellogenin (Vg) promoter. Transgene expression inhibits infection with several dengue virus (DENV) serotypes in the midgut as well as systemically and in the salivary glands. The impact of the transgenes Dome and Hop on mosquito longevity was minimal, but it resulted in a compromised fecundity when compared to wild-type mosquitoes.

The world is rapidly becoming urban with the global population living in cities projected to double by 2050. This increase in urbanization poses new challenges for the spread and control of communicable diseases such as malaria. In particular, urban environments create highly heterogeneous socio-economic and environmental conditions that can affect the transmission of vector-borne diseases dependent on human water storage and waste water management.