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J Med Entomol. 1990 Mar;27(2):202-6.

Esterases A2 and B2 in Culex quinquefasciatus (Diptera: Culicidae): role in organophosphate resistance and linkage.

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  • 1Department of Entomology, University of California, Riverside 92521.


Two highly active esterases, A2 and B2, were isolated in SeLax, a strain of Culex quinquefasciatus Say from California which demonstrated resistance levels of 19, 14, and 4.3 times to the organophosphate insecticides chlorpyrifos, temephos, and malathion, respectively. Selection of SeLax by temephos during 31 generations increased resistance to this insecticide to 65 times. This resistance was shown to be DEF-suppressible, monofactorial, and strongly associated with the presence of esterases A2 and B2. Although these two esterases are encoded by distinct structural genes, no disjunction was observed when SeLax was crossed to S-Lab, a susceptible strain, or to S54, a strain resistant to organophosphates by means of esterase A1. However, when SeLax was crossed to strain Tem-R, which is resistant to organophosphates because of a highly active esterase B1, all possible recombinants occurred. These results were discussed in relation to the recent discovery that increased activity of B esterases in the genus Culex is caused by gene amplification.

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