Mosquito behaviour

Behaviour of African malaria vectors.
Dr Philip McCall

Elucidation of the behaviour of vector mosquitoes is fundamental to the development of novel tools for their control, and the prevention of pathogen transmission.  Yet we know very little about mosquito behaviour inside or around our homes. Moreover, long-lasting insecticidal bed nets (LLINs) protect humans from malaria transmission and are fundamental to malaria control, particularly in Africa, but little is known of how mosquitoes interact with nets.  In this collaboration with engineers at the University of Warwick and working with the National Institute for Medical Research in Tanzania, we are using a novel 3D video tracking technology to capture and characterise mosquito behaviours during house entry and exit and during host location and bloodfeeding and examining how insecticides impact on these key events in their natural history. 

Behaviour of exophagic malaria vectors in Mozambique  
Wellcome Trust
Lead Dr Philip McCall 
MSc Fellowship to Ayubo Kampango
Residual transmission of malaria by outdoor biting mosquitoes is a major challenge to vector control and an obstacle to malaria elimination plans.  In this project, based in Mozambique, we have developed a highly effective exposure-free human-baited trap and we are using it to investigate the visual signals that determine whether a mosquito is classified as being ‘indoor-biting (endophagic) or outdoor-biting (exophagic). We hope that the results will provide insight into this important aspect of mosquito perception and a guide for developing approaches for reduction of outdoor transmitted malaria.