Sibao Wang, Marcelo Jacobs-Lorena
Key Laboratory of Insect Developmental and Evolutionary Biology, Institute of Plant Physiology and Ecology, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai 200032, China.
Malaria remains one of the most devastating diseases worldwide, causing over 1 million deaths every year. The most vulnerable stages of Plasmodium development in the vector mosquito occur in the midgut lumen, making the midgut a prime target for intervention. Mosquito transgenesis and paratransgenesis are two novel strategies that aim at rendering the vector incapable of sustaining Plasmodium development. Mosquito transgenesis involves direct genetic engineering of the mosquito itself for delivery of anti-Plasmodiumeffector molecules. Conversely, paratransgenesis involves the genetic modification of mosquito symbionts for expression of anti-pathogen effector molecules. Here we consider both genetic manipulation strategies for rendering mosquitoes refractory to Plasmodium infection, and discuss challenges for the translation of laboratory findings to field applications.