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Study of the virus-vector interaction and the mechanisms involved in modulating the dynamics of viral transmission


Arboviruses constitute one of the most diverse groups of RNA viruses, transmitted mainly by hematophagous insects, especially mosquitoes belonging to the Aedes genus. In South America, Brazil is considered an epicenter for emerging and re-emerging arboviruses diseases since outbreaks or epidemics of DENV1-4, YFV, MAYV, ROCV, SLEV, OROV, CHIKV, and ZIKV have been reported. The spread of these diseases is widely associated with factors that contribute to vector dispersion, as well as intrinsic characteristics of the species, that can influence vector competence and, consequently, arbovirus world-spread. Thus, in this project, we intend to investigate the complex, interconnected relationship between virus-vector, and provide insights on how to better proceed in the face of recurrent epidemics, which significantly affect the public health of several Brazilian municipalities, how São José do Rio Preto city (SJRP). São José do Rio Preto is a city from Northwest São Paulo State, with frequently occurring DENV epidemics. The DENV was introduced in SJRP in 1990 and from then on successive epidemics occurred in 2010, 2013, 2015, 2016 and 2019. Thus, the SJRP presents the other arboviruses' circulation, such as ZIKV and CHIKV, although epidemics never observed. In front of this, the hypothesis of this study is how the relationship between different factors of vector biology can affect the dynamic of arbovirus transmission in SJRP and what the influence in the recurrent local DENV epidemics and the absence of ZIKV and CHIKV outbreaks. Therefore, in this project, we propose investigating the different factors related to vector competence that affect the genetic variability in determinate mosquito's population; the fitness viral that is arbovirus linage current dependent; vector microbiome and virus persistence in the vector, that can be modulate by gene expression and viral replication and contributing of viral circulation in unfavorable period. For this, we will realize successive collections of mosquitos, eggs then adults, in three different areas: urban, periurban and sylvatic. Thus, with the collection of mosquitoes, we will build Aedes mosquitoes colonies native from SJRP and these are established in appropriated insectary for posterior vector competence assays, how influence of different microorganisms and ISVs, fitness viral and gene expression and regulation viral replication assays. The adult mosquitos will be molecular tested for arboviroses and ISV identification and these will be used to genetic variability of mosquito's population assays. The molecular assays, viral isolation and genomic sequencing will be realized. In proposing this research project, we expect to answer what intrinsic and extrinsic factors, in different Aedes mosquito's populations, native from the city presenting the capacity to modulate the vector competence. These results will be associated with the genetic diversity of mosquitoes' population and the dynamic of arbovirus transmission, as an attempt to elucidate the mechanisms of gene flow and fitness that the viruses are exposed to in the vectors. (AU)

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