Aedes aegypti (Linnaeus) (Diptera: Culicidae) is the main vector of viruses causing dengue, chikungunya, Zika, and yellow fever, worldwide. This report focuses on immuno-blocking four critical proteins in the female mosquito when fed on blood containing antibodies against ferritin, transferrin, one amino acid transporter (NAAT1), and acetylcholinesterase (AchE). Peptides from these proteins were selected, synthetized, conjugated to carrier proteins, and used as antigens to immunize New Zealand rabbits. After rabbits were immunized, a minimum of 20 female mosquitos were fed on each rabbit, per replicate. No effect in their viability was observed after blood-feeding; however, the number of infertile females was 20% higher than the control when fed on AchE-immunized rabbits. The oviposition period was significantly longer in females fed on immunized rabbits than those fed on control (non-immunized) rabbits. Fecundity (eggs/female) of treated mosquitoes was significantly reduced (about 50%) in all four treatments, as compared with the control. Fertility (hatched larvae) was also significantly reduced in all four treatments, as compared with the control, being the effect on AchE and transferrin the highest, by reducing hatching between 70 and 80%. Survival to the adult stage of the hatched larvae showed no significant effect, as more than 95% survival was observed in all treatments, including the control. In conclusion, immuno-blocking of these four proteins caused detrimental effects on the mosquito reproduction, being the effect on AchE the most significant.
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Authors express their gratitude to the excellent technical support of Javier Luévano-Borroel, Regina Basurto-Ríos, and Mayra Rodríguez-Solís.
Authors’ Contribution Statement
ANLC developed most of the experimental work as an MSc thesis under the technical supervision of JEI, EEA, and MASM. LGV contributed with some of the theoretical bases for the selection of critical proteins and active peptides. JEI was the leader of the group and contributed with the project design and general management and supervision. He also obtained the financial support for the project.
This work was supported by Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (CONACYT, Mexico), project number 258878.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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