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Taxonomic revision and YFV infection investigation in Sabethes (Sabethes) (Diptera: Culicidae)

Grant number: 21/14677-9
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctoral
Effective date (Start): December 01, 2022
Effective date (End): November 30, 2024
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Zoology - Taxonomy of Recent Groups
Principal Investigator:Mauro Toledo Marrelli
Grantee:Rafael de Oliveira Christe
Host Institution: Faculdade de Saúde Pública (FSP). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


The Yellow Fever is an infection disease, caused by Haemagogus and Sabethes mosquitoes genus. Although, studies that seek to individually investigate taxonomic and epidemiological aspects of the Sabethes subgenus are scarce, despite their assoaciation with non-human primates (NHP), the main Yellow Fever Virus (YFV) reservoirs. Efforts of this magnitude are important because, in addition to the Amazon region, Sabethes species are present in many biomes where there YFV transmission and the interaction of human in wild environments becomes accentuated, increasing their exposure to pathogen vectors. Among the Sabethes subgenus (Davismyia, Sabethoides, Sabethinus,Peytonulus and Sabethes), Sabethes has the largest number of species and some incriminated as vectors of YFV. However, some species are present in places that have been proven to be enzootic for YFV, and to them, there are transmission signs. The lack of investigative approaches on the species participation in maintenance cycles of YFV is a gap that has long been hypothesized, but lacks effective exploration. One of the factors is the inherent difficulty in correctly mosquitoes species identification. The procedure for identifying Sabethes subgenus is compromised by the lack of trained professionals; many species do not have all previous life stages described; superficial or even contested descriptions; when available, the access to this descriptions for health agencies, the main links between population and disease control, is difficult. The combination of the problems can lead, in the most pessimistic scenario, to erroneous vector species determination, or the lack of knowledge about epidemiological role of the species. Through field collections, the objectives of this project are: (1) Make a taxonomic review of the subgenus Sabethes providing the conception of updated identification keys for all life stages, essential to fauna surveys in YFV transmission areas; (2) investigate of the YFV presence in each Sabethes subgenus species; (3) Verify the YFV transovarial transmission among Sabethes subgenus species, which may answer the question of how the YFV is maintained in the environment, even during interpizootic intervals.

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