Development of a DNA-Based Method for Distinguishing the Malaria Vectors, Anopheles gambiae from Anopheles arabiensis.
Annual rept. 15 Jun 86-14 Jun 87,
EMORY UNIV ATLANTA GA DEPT OF BIOLOGY
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The Anopheles gambiae complex includes six morphologically identical species, two of which A. gambiae and A. arabiensis are the primary African malaria vectors today. Since two or more of the species are commonly sympatric, epidemiological studies to determine the involvement of each in malaria transmission have been difficult. This report describes our efforts to develop a DNA probe to distinguish A. gambiae from A. arabiensis. The DNA probe is a fragment of rDNA from A. gambiae which displays an RFLP when the two species are compared by Southern analysis. Thus far the probe has proven to be extremely sensitive since it can be used even with short exposures to diagnose single adult mosquitoes or parts thereof of both sexes. Larvae and pupae are similarly easy to distinguish. Specimens kept dessicated at room temperature for as long as nine months can be scored. We have demonstrated that the DNA probe method can also be readily used on dessicated abdomens, while the thoraces have been used for sporozoite analysis. Blood meal analysis is easily done from the protein pellet obtained during DNA extraction.Author