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Ecological plasticity to ions concentration determines genetic response and dominance of Anopheles coluzzii larvae in urban coastal habitats of Central Africa

Abstract : In Central Africa, the malaria vector Anopheles coluzzii is predominant in urban and coastal habitats. However, little is known about the environmental factors that may be involved in this process. Here, we performed an analysis of 28 physicochemical characteristics of 59 breeding sites across 5 urban and rural sites in coastal areas of Central Africa. We then modelled the relative frequency of An. coluzzii larvae to these physicochemical parameters in order to investigate environmental patterns. Then, we assessed the expression variation of 10 candidate genes in An. coluzzii , previously incriminated with insecticide resistance and osmoregulation in urban settings. Our results confirmed the ecological plasticity of An. coluzzii larvae to breed in a large range of aquatic conditions and its predominance in breeding sites rich in ions. Gene expression patterns were comparable between urban and rural habitats, suggesting a broad response to ions concentrations of whatever origin. Altogether, An. coluzzii exhibits a plastic response to occupy both coastal and urban habitats. This entails important consequences for malaria control in the context of the rapid urban expansion in Africa in the coming years.
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Submitted on : Friday, January 7, 2022 - 4:28:34 AM
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Neil M. Longo-Pendy, Billy Tene-Fossog, Robert E. Tawedi, Ousman Akone-Ella, Céline Toty, et al.. Ecological plasticity to ions concentration determines genetic response and dominance of Anopheles coluzzii larvae in urban coastal habitats of Central Africa. Scientific Reports, Nature Publishing Group, 2021, 11 (1), pp.15781. ⟨10.1038/s41598-021-94258-6⟩. ⟨pasteur-03516004⟩

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