Prairie dogs in the western U.S. can carry the bacterium that causes bubonic plague, and their fleas play a primary role in spreading it among prairie dogs and to other animals. A group of scientists say insect-pathogenic fungi that target those fleas could be a useful tool in interrupting that transmission route.
Genes that make mosquitoes glow under UV light help scientists measure the spread of transgenic mosquitoes after they've been released to suppress wild populations of vector mosquito species. A recent study identifies a new promoter gene for turning on fluorescent protein production in Aedes aegypti mosquitoes.
Coming Full Circle: How an Entomologist’s Experience With Vector-Borne Diseases Inspired Her to Study Them
Meet Ashley Kennedy, Ph.D., BCE, tick biologist, active ESA volunteer, and subject of the next installment of our "Standout Early Career Professionals" series.
Analysis of Asian longhorned ticks collected in Pennsylvania found just one—out of more than 250 tested—carrying the bacteria that causes Lyme disease. The invasive tick is unlikely to play a role in Lyme transmission, but the research underscores the importance of active tick and pathogen surveillance and collaboration among agencies at local, state, and national levels.
It's not enough to know mosquito abundance in a given area. Rather, the rate at which mosquitoes and humans actually come into contact is critical, a group of researchers say, to better understanding and modeling mosquito-borne disease transmission.