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Bioprospection of antiviral bacteria from the Aedes aegypti gut microbiota

Grant number: 19/19686-6
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Master
Effective date (Start): September 01, 2020
Effective date (End): August 31, 2022
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Parasitology - Entomology and Malacology of Parasites and Vectors
Principal researcher:Jayme Augusto de Souza-Neto
Grantee:Maria Raquel Gomes Fernandes
Home Institution: Faculdade de Ciências Agronômicas (FCA). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Botucatu. Botucatu , SP, Brazil

Abstract

The dengue virus is a flavivirus (Flaviviridae family) transmitted in Brazil by Aedes aegypti. In South America, after the reincidence of the vector in the 1970s, most Brazilian states reported DENV infection, including local transmission from the late 1980s. Arbovirus transmission is directly influenced by the mosquito vector competence, which is defined as the vector permissiveness to infection, replication and transmission of a particular pathogen. The bacteria present in the mosquito midgut represent an important component of its antiviral defenses. These microbes can interfere with viral replication either directly by the production of antiviral molecules, or indirectly through the activation of the mosquito's antiviral immunity. The use of symbiont microbes as a source of therapeutic compounds, or to render mosquitoes refractory to human pathogens and consequently control the spread of vector-borne diseases is an innovative approach that has gained momentum in recent years. In this context, the present study aims (i) the identification of Ae. aegypti gut bacteria with high anti-DENV potential, which (or their metabolites) could be further used to prevent DENV replication in the mosquito or in humans and thus contain the spread of the disease; as well as (ii) evaluating changes in the mosquito's culturable gut microbial diversity in response to viral infection. This study can help us to elucidate the viricidal potential of the Ae. aegypti gut microbiota and its influence on the mosquito's vector competence, offering new opportunities for the development of promising strategies for dengue control. (AU)

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