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Parasit Vectors. 2016 May 5;9:268. doi: 10.1186/s13071-016-1543-0.

Circumsporozoite protein rates, blood-feeding pattern and frequency of knockdown resistance mutations in Anopheles spp. in two ecological zones of Mauritania.

Author information

UR Génome et Milieux, Faculté des Sciences et Techniques, Université des Sciences, de Technologie et de Médecine, Nouveau Campus Universitaire, BP 5026, Nouakchott, Mauritania.
Institut de Recherche Biomédicale des Armées, Ancienne base aérienne 217, B.P. 73, 91223, Brétigny-sur-Orge, France.
Laboratoire de Parasitologie, CNR du Paludisme région Antilles-Guyane, Institut Pasteur de la Guyane, Cayenne, Cedex, France.
Unité de Recherche sur les Maladies Infectieuses et Tropicales Emergentes, Unité de Recherche 198-Institut de Recherche pour le Développement, Faculté de Médecine La Timone, Aix-Marseille Université, 27 Boulevard Jean Moulin, Marseille, 13385, France.
Regional office of the French Institute for Public Health Surveillance, Cire Océan Indien, Saint-Denis, Reunion Island, France.



Mosquitoes belonging to Anopheles gambiae species complex are the main malaria vector in Mauritania but data on their vector capacities, feeding habits and insecticide susceptibility are still scanty. The objectives of this study were to fill this gap.


Adult Anopheles spp. mosquitoes were collected using pyrethrum spray catch method from two ecological zones of Mauritania: Nouakchott (Saharan zone) and Hodh Elgharbi region (Sahelian zone). Circumsporozoite proteins (CSP) for P. falciparum, P. vivax VK210 and P. vivax VK247 were detected by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) from the female anopheline mosquitoes. To confirm CSP-ELISA results, polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was also performed. Blood meal identification was performed in all engorged females by partial sequencing of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene. Molecular assessments of pyrethroid knockdown resistance (kdr) and insensitive acetylcholinesterase resistance (ace-1) were conducted.


In Nouakchott, the only species of Anopheles identified during the survey was Anopheles arabiensis (356 specimens). In Hodh Elgharbi, 1016 specimens of Anopheles were collected, including 578 (56.9%) Anopheles rufipes, 410 (40.35%) An. arabiensis, 20 (1.96%) An. gambiae, 5 (0.5%) An. pharoensis and 3 (0.3 %) An. funestus. Three of 186 female An. arabiensis collected in Nouakchott and tested by ELISA were found positive for Plasmodium vivax VK210, corresponding to a sporozoite rate of 1.6%; however PCR confirmed infection by P. vivax sporozoite in only one of these. In Hodh Elgharbi, no mosquito was found positive for Plasmodium spp. infection. There was a statistically significant difference in the percentage of human blood-fed Anopheles spp. between Nouakchott (58.7%, 47 of 80 blood-engorged An. arabiensis females) and Hodh Elgharbi (11.1%, 2 of 18 blood-engorged mosquitoes). Analysis of the kdr polymorphisms showed 48.2% (70/145) of East African kdr mutation (L1014S) in Nouakchott compared to 10% (4/40) in Hodh Elgharbi region (P < 0.001). Nevertheless, West African kdr mutation (L1014F) was found only in An. gambiae populations (4/40, 10%) from Hodh Elgharbi region. No ace-1 mutation was found in mosquito specimens from the two study zones.


Overall, this study confirmed the autochthonous P. vivax malaria transmission in Nouakchott, involving An. arabiensis as the main vector. It also described for the first time the absence of ace-1 mutation, the co-occurrence of both West and East African kdr mutation in An. gambiae in Mauritania, and highlighted the regional variations in the prevalence and type of kdr mutations.


Anopheles arabiensis; Anopheles gambiae (s.s.); Blood meal; CSP-ELISA; Mauritania; Plasmodium vivax VK210

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