Mating Biology Of Aedes Aegypti Males

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The objectives of this study were to develop first an accessory gland specific promoter and to investigate some basic aspects of the mating biology of Aedes aegypti, an important vector of dengue and dengue hemorrhagic fever. In addition, I investigated male ejaculate allocation patterns as influenced by female reproductive quality (female body size), and I studied male mating preferences in semi-field conditions in a dengue endemic region of Thailand. I developed an AG-specific promoter construct for male Ae. aegypti that can be used in future studies targeting seminal fluid protein (sfp) genes and understanding sfp function. I first identified the 5´ UTR of AAEL010824 gene with a 5´ UTR average length of 22 bases. I then cloned the region 5 kb upstream this gene and incorporated it into a DNA plasmid pBac[3xP3-DsRedaf] construct to obtain the first AG-specific promoter pBac[3xP3-AAEL010824EGFP-DsRedaf] for Ae. aegypti. In this study, I explored whether Ae. aegypti males modulate the quantity of sperm and seminal fluid proteins (AAEL010824). Evidence suggested that Ae. aegypti males transfer greater sperm to large females than small ones. I found no evidence of significant differences in sperm or sfp allocation by males under different mating competition conditions. In addition, there was no significant difference in the amount of sfp determined by quantitation of AAEL010824 transferred to females regardless of size or competition from other males. In the third component of my research project, I investigated male mating preferences for females by body size. Body size is known to be directly related to fecundity in female mosquitoes and is an important component of fitness. Although my samples sizes were low, I found some indication that mate choice by size may occur in Ae. aegypti. However, more experiments need to be conducted to definitively address this question. Collectively, this work was intended to contribute to a greater understanding of mosquito mating biology as it relates to the use of transgenic males for population control programs. ii
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Aedes aegypti; Mating biology; sperm transfer; AG-specific promoter in; Aedes aegypti
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Harrington, Laura C.
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Wolfner, Mariana Federica
Searle, Angela E.
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M.S., Entomology
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Master of Science
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Government Document
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dissertation or thesis
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