DOI: 10.30802/aalas-cm-23-000037 ISSN: 1532-0820

AC-DC Electropenetrography as a Tool to Quantify Probing and Injection Behaviors of Mosquitos (Aedes aegypti) in Mice under Briocontainment Housing

Lyndsi D Vaughan, Samuel B Jameson, Dawn M Wesson, Kristopher S Silver, Dana N Mitzel, Georgina L Dobek, Berlin Londoño-Renteria
  • General Veterinary
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology

A detailed understanding of mosquito probing and ingestion behaviors is crucial in developing novel interventions to interrupt the transmission of important human and veterinary pathogens, but these behaviors are difficult to observe as the mouthparts are inserted into the skin of the host. Electropenetrography (EPG) allows indirect observation, recording, and quantification of probing and ingestion behaviors of arthropods by visualizing the electrical waveform associated with these behaviors. The study of mosquito probing and ingestion behaviors has been limited to the use of human hands as host, which is not suitable for pathogen transmission studies. Mouse models of mosquito-borne diseases are a widely used and indispensable tool in this research, but previous attempts to use direct current EPG to study mosquito probing behaviors on mice have been unsuccessful. Accordingly, the present study used alternating or direct current (AC-DC) EPG to observe the ingestion behaviors of adult Aedes aegypti mosquitoes on a mouse host in real time under BSL-2 containment conditions with enhanced BSL-3 practices. Our results show that waveform families previously identified during Ae. aegypti probing and ingestion on human hands were observed using 100 mV of AC at an input resistance (Ri) of 107 Ohms (Ω) on CD1 mice. This work is a proof of concept for using mouse models for studying mosquito probing and ingestion behaviors with AC-DC EPG. In addition, these data show that the experimental setup used in these experiments is sufficient for conducting studies on mosquito probing and ingestion behaviors under BSL-2 containment conditions enhanced with BSL-3 practices. This work will serve as a foundation for using EPG to investigate the effects of pathogen infection on mosquito probing behaviors and to understand the real-time dynamics of pathogen transmission.

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