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The arbovirus vector Culex torrentium is more prevalent than Culex pipiens in northern and central Europe


Hesson, J C; Rettich, F; Merdić, E; Vignjević, G; Ostman, O; Schäfer, M; Schaffner, F; Foussadier, R; Besnard, G; Medlock, J; Scholte, E-J; Lundström, J O (2014). The arbovirus vector Culex torrentium is more prevalent than Culex pipiens in northern and central Europe. Medical and Veterinary Entomology, 28(2):179-186.

Abstract

Two species of arbovirus vector, Culex torrentium and Culex pipiens (Diptera: Culicidae), occur in several European countries, but difficulties in their accurate identification and discrimination have hampered both detailed and large-scale distribution and abundance studies. Using a molecular identification method, we identified to species 2559 larvae of Cx. pipiens/torrentium collected from 138 sites in 13 European countries ranging from Scandinavia to the Mediterranean coast. In addition, samples of 1712 males of Cx. pipiens/torrentium collected at several sites in the Czech Republic were identified to species based on the morphology of their hypopygia. We found that the two species occur together in large areas of Europe, and that Cx. torrentium dominates in northern Europe and Cx. pipiens dominates south of the Alps. The transition in dominance occurs in central Europe, where both species are roughly equally common. There was a strong correlation between the length of the growing season at different sites and occurrences of the two species. As the growing season increases, the proportion and detection of Cx. torrentium decrease, whereas those of Cx. pipiens increase. The present findings have important consequences for the interpretation of the results of studies on major enzootic and link-vectors of mosquito-borne bird-associated viruses (i.e. Sindbis, West Nile and Usutu viruses), especially in central Europe and Scandinavia.

Abstract

Two species of arbovirus vector, Culex torrentium and Culex pipiens (Diptera: Culicidae), occur in several European countries, but difficulties in their accurate identification and discrimination have hampered both detailed and large-scale distribution and abundance studies. Using a molecular identification method, we identified to species 2559 larvae of Cx. pipiens/torrentium collected from 138 sites in 13 European countries ranging from Scandinavia to the Mediterranean coast. In addition, samples of 1712 males of Cx. pipiens/torrentium collected at several sites in the Czech Republic were identified to species based on the morphology of their hypopygia. We found that the two species occur together in large areas of Europe, and that Cx. torrentium dominates in northern Europe and Cx. pipiens dominates south of the Alps. The transition in dominance occurs in central Europe, where both species are roughly equally common. There was a strong correlation between the length of the growing season at different sites and occurrences of the two species. As the growing season increases, the proportion and detection of Cx. torrentium decrease, whereas those of Cx. pipiens increase. The present findings have important consequences for the interpretation of the results of studies on major enzootic and link-vectors of mosquito-borne bird-associated viruses (i.e. Sindbis, West Nile and Usutu viruses), especially in central Europe and Scandinavia.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:05 Vetsuisse Faculty > Institute of Parasitology
04 Faculty of Medicine > Institute of Parasitology
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
610 Medicine & health
600 Technology
Language:English
Date:2014
Deposited On:10 Feb 2014 15:40
Last Modified:08 Dec 2017 03:05
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.
ISSN:0269-283X
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1111/mve.12024
PubMed ID:23947434

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