Reduced competitiveness of Wolbachia infected Aedes aegypti larvae in intra- and inter-specific immature interactions

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15 Scopus citations


Wolbachia are maternally inherited intracellular bacteria that frequently infect a diverse range of arthropod species. Empirical and theoretical studies examining Wolbachia invasiveness have emphasized Wolbachia effects on adult hosts, but recent studies show that Wolbachia impacts on immature hosts can be important also. Here, we have examined for effects of Wolbachia infection in Aedes aegypti. Specifically, differential survivorship is observed when young larvae (1st instar) are exposed to older Aedes albopictus larvae (4th instar) or con-specific larvae. In an additional experiment, we have examined for differential behavior and observed that Wolbachia-infected larvae differ from uninfected larvae in their reaction to light stimulation. Our results support a hypothesized effect of Wolbachia on A. aegypti larval behavior. The results are discussed in relation to the ability of Wolbachia to invade natural populations and recently applied public health strategies that target the replacement or suppression of this important disease vector.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)173-177
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Invertebrate Pathology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Oct 2013

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank S. O’Neill for providing mosquito strains (PGYP1, PGYP1.tet and JCU). This research was supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health [AI-067434] and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation [#44190]. The information reported in this paper (No. 13-08-010) is part of a project of the Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station and is published with the approval of the Director.


  • CI
  • Dengue
  • Fitness cost
  • Insect behavior
  • JCU
  • L1
  • L4
  • MID
  • PGYP1
  • PGYP1.tet
  • Population replacement
  • Predation
  • Wolbachia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics


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