Dr David Weetman


I graduated in Zoology (BSc) from the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne and in Ecology (MSc) from The University of Wales, Bangor. My PhD at The University of Liverpool was followed by postdoctoral positions in the Molecular Ecology and Fisheries Genetics Group at the University of Hull. I joined LSTM in 2006 working as a senior PDRA on IVCC and then NIAID-funded projects on the genetic basis of insecticide resistance in Anopheles gambiae. I was appointed as Reader in 2020.


My research aims primarily to investigate the genes and mutations responsible for insecticide resistance in mosquitoes and phlebotomine sandflies and how these spread among populations. A goal of this work is to identify and apply DNA markers for resistance diagnosis in control programmes. A second area of research is in questions related to the causes and consequences of vector speciation and population subdivision and how these regulate transfer of adaptive traits of medical importance. I am also broadly interested in the application of molecular techniques to applied ecological questions in vector biology. I coordinate the Vector Research Support group (VRS), which provides molecular and biochemical collaboration, training and services.

Research staff

Pat Pignatelli: Senior Technician, Vector Research Support group

John Morgan: Senior Technician, Kalacore project 

Emily Rippon: NIAID-funded technician (co-manager with Martin Donnelly)

Overseas affiliated partners

Edi Constant CSRS, Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire. Wellcome Trust training fellowship. Identifying, understanding, and exploiting insecticide cross resistance for control of the primary malaria vector Anopheles gambiae in West Africa. (co-sponsor)

Luc Djogbenou IRSP, Ouidah, Benin. Wellcome Trust Intermediate Fellowship. The impact of insecticide resistance and exposure on Plasmodium infection level and prevalence in the malaria vector Anopheles gambiae. (co-sponsor)

Current Projects

2016-2021 NIAID R01. ‘GAARDIAN’ Genomics for African Anopheles Resistance Diagnosis (co-PI with Martin Donnelly, LSTM))

2016-2020 MRC-DTP studentship to Emily Martin. Resistance to repurposed agricultural insecticides in Anopheles gambiae (supervisor with Hilary Ranson, LSTM and Luigi Sedda, Lancaster University) 

2017-2018. DfID-Kalacore consortium. Trial of alternative insecticides for sandfly control in India. (PI; with Mark Paine, LSTM), Pradeep Das, Vijay Kumar (RMRI)

2016-2019. Wellcome Trust Training Fellowship to John Essandoh, University of Cape Coast. Landscape genetics in the control of Anopheles gambiae (supervisor with Alex Yawson, University of Cape Coast and Michelle Stanton, Lancaster University)

2016-2018 Wellcome Trust MSc Fellowship; Ayman Ahmed. Genetic causes and delimitation of carbamate and organophosphate resistance in Anopheles arabiensis, the primary malaria vector in Sudan (supervisor with Muzamil Mahdi, University of Khartoum)

2015-2017. Wellcome Trust MSc Fellowship; Joel Odero. Tracking the mothers: applying genetic makers to guide strategies for controlling Anopheles mosquito larvae (supervisor, with Uli Filinger, icipe, Kenya)

2014-2017 SACB-funded PhD studentship; Ashwaq Alnazawi. Physiological and behavioural mechanisms of insecticide resistance in Aedes aegypti from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (supervisor with Philip McCall, LSTM)

Recent projects

2016-2017. MRF (MRC) African Research Excellence Fund. Fellowship support and training award to El Hadji Niang. Insecticide resistance and population genetics of Anopheles arabiensis in Senegal (supervisor)

2015-2016 Against Malaria Foundation. Entomological evaluation of LLIN efficacy in Nord Ubangi, Democratic Republic of Congo. DRC (PI)

2015-2016. Wellcome Trust ISSF award Molecular tools for insecticide resistance diagnosis in phlebotomine sandflies for sustainable leishmaniasis control and elimination programmes (PI)

2015-2017 MRC CIC award (£45k) Point of care diagnostic development for insecticide resistance markers. (DW co-I, with Mark Paine and Emily Adams)

2015-2017 TDR Impact grant (£60k) Dengue in Burkina Faso: establishing a vector biology evidence base for risk assessment and vector control strategies for an emerging disease. Applicant Athanase Badolo (CNRFP, University of Ouagadougou). (DW co-supervisor with Philip McCall).

2009-2015 NIAID R01. Development of a Field Applicable Screening Toolkit for resistance to public health insecticides (DW Co-I with Martin Donnelly).


I teach on the MSc courses in Biology and Control of Parasites and Disease Vectors and Molecular Biology of Parasites and Disease Vectors, and am convenor of the Vector Population Biology and Control module (TROP741) with Mark Paine). I teach occasionally on other courses including the Diploma in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene at LSTM.

PhD students 

Ashwaq Alnazawi

John Essandoh

Emily Martin

Vera Unwin (secondary)

Paul Howell (secondary)  

Recent PhD students

Chris Clarkson, PhD 2015 (co-supervisor with Martin Donnelly), now a PDRA in Kwiatkowski group at Oxford working within Ag1000g project

Edi Constant, PhD 2014 (co-supervisor with Hilary Ranson and Benjamin Koudou), WT postdoctoral fellow based at CSRS, Abidjan

Kevin Opondo, PhD 2016. Role of insecticide resistance in malaria hotspots (secondary supervisor, with Martin Donnelly, LSTM, and Umberto d’Alessandro, MRC The Gambia)

Other relevant expertise

Member of WIN: Worldwide insecticide resistance network in mosquito vectors of arboviruses. 19 worldwide partner institutes led by Vincent Corbel and Jean-Phillipe David; funded by WHO-TDR.

Member of Ag1000g: Anopheles gambiae 1000 genomes consortium

Associate Editor, Parasites & Vectors


Selected publications

  • Moyes CL, Vontas J, Martins AJ, Ng LC, Koou SY, Dusfour I, Raghavendra K, Pinto J, Corbel V, David J-P, Weetman D (2017) Contemporary status of insecticide resistance in the major Aedes vectors of arboviruses infecting humans. PLoS Negl Trop Dis 11(7): e0005625

    Gomes B, Purkait B, Deb RM, Rama A, Singh RP, Foster GM, Coleman M, Kumar V, Paine M, Das P, Weetman D (2017) Knockdown resistance mutations predict DDT resistance and pyrethroid tolerance in the visceral leishmaniasis vector Phlebotomus argentipes. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 11(4):e0005504. doi: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0005504.

    Weetman D, Mitchell SN, Wilding SN, Birks DP, Yawson AE, Essandoh J, Mawejje HD, Djogbenou LS, Steen K, Rippon EJ, Clarkson CS, Field SG, Rigden DJ, Donnelly MJ (2015) Contemporary evolution of resistance at the major insecticide target site gene Ace-1 by mutation and copy number variation in the malaria mosquito Anopheles gambiae. Molecular Ecology 24:2656-72.

    ClarksonCS*, WeetmanD*, Essandoh J, YawsonAE, Maslen G, ManskeM, Field SG, Webster M, Antão T, MacInnis B, Kwiatkowski D, Donnelly MJ (2014) Adaptive introgression eliminates a major genomic island of divergence but not reproductive isolation between Anopheles gambiae sibling species. Nature Communications 5:4248

    Edi CV, Djogbénou L, Jenkins AM, Regna K, Muskavitch MAT, Poupardin R, Jones CM, Essandoh J, Kétoh GK, Paine MJI, Koudou BG, Donnelly MJ, Ranson H, Weetman D. (2014) CYP6 P450 enzymes and ACE-1 duplication produce extreme and multiple insecticide resistance in the malaria mosquito Anopheles gambiae. PLoS Genetics 10:e1004236

    Weetman D, Steen K, Rippon EJ, Mawejje HD, Donnelly MJ, Wilding CS (2014) Contemporary gene flow between wild An. gambiae s.s. and An. arabiensisParasites and Vectors 7:345

    Full list of publications at http://orcid.org/0000-0002-5820-1388