Detection and quantification of natural Wolbachia in Aedes aegypti in Metropolitan Manila, Philippines using locally designed primers

Reyes JIL, Suzuki T, Suzuki Y, Watanabe K.,  Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology,  2024.

The Philippines bears health and economic burden caused by high dengue cases annually. Presently, the Philippines still lack an effective and sustainable vector management. The use of Wolbachia, a maternally transmitted bacterium, that mitigate arbovirus transmission has been recommended. Cytoplasmic incompatibility and viral blocking, two characteristics that make Wolbachia suitable for vector control, depend on infection prevalence and density. There are no current Wolbachia release programs in the Philippines, and studies regarding the safety of this intervention. Here, we screened for Wolbachia in Aedes aegypti collected from Metropolitan Manila, Philippines. We designed location-specific primers for qPCR to test whether this improved Wolbachia detection in Ae. aegypti. We explored if host sex and Wolbachia strain could be potential factors affecting Wolbachia density.

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