, Volume 1, Issue 1, pp 21-31

Novel Genetic and Molecular Tools for the Investigation and Control of Dengue Virus Transmission by Mosquitoes

Abstract

Aedes aegypti is the principal vector of dengue virus (DENV) throughout the tropical world. This anthropophilic mosquito species needs to be persistently infected with DENV before it can transmit the virus through its saliva to a new vertebrate host. In the mosquito, DENV is confronted with several innate immune pathways, among which RNA interference is considered the most important. The Ae. aegypti genome project opened the doors for advanced molecular studies on pathogen–vector interactions, including genetic manipulation of the vector for basic research and vector control purposes. Thus, Ae. aegypti has become the primary model for studying vector competence for arboviruses at the molecular level. Here, we present recent findings regarding DENV–mosquito interactions, emphasizing how innate immune responses modulate DENV infections in Ae. aegypti. We also describe the latest advancements in genetic manipulation of Ae. aegypti and discuss how this technology can be used to investigate vector transmission of DENV at the molecular level and to control transmission of the virus in the field.