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J Med Entomol. 2000 May;37(3):340-5.

Distribution and diversity of Wolbachia infections in Southeast Asian mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae).

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Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, Mahidol University, Rama VI Road, Bangkok 10400, Thailand.


Wolbachia are a group of intracellular inherited bacteria that infect a wide range of arthropods. They are associated with a variety of reproductive alterations in their hosts, the best known being cytoplasmic incompatability. The Wolbachia pipientis assemblage has been divided into two major groups (A and B) and 12 subgroups. We report herein the first systematic survey of Wolbachia in mosquitoes, and the first survey classifying Wolbachia infections by subgroup. Wolbachia were detected in 28.1% of 89 wild-caught mosquito species, based on a polymerase chain reaction assay using ftsZ and wsp gene primers. Infections were found in all major disease vector genera except Anopheles. Nine of the 12 Wolbachia subgroups were represented. Group B Wolbachia strains showed more phylogenetic concordance with their host taxa than group A strains. Of the 25 positive mosquito species, five were superinfected with group A bacteria strains (AA), eight were superinfected with A and B strains (AB), and one was superinfected with group B strains (BB). The widespread distribution of Wolbachia among mosquito species further supports their potential importance in the genetic control of disease vectors.

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