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Little is known about the transmission dynamics of human malaria and other vector-borne
diseases, partly because of the limited availability and distribution of appropriate
tools for quantifying human-mosquito contact rates. Recent developments in molecular
biology have allowed a significant increase in the efficacy and reliability of bloodmeal
identification, and DNA-based molecular markers are now being harnessed for typing
arthropod bloodmeals. The extent to which these markers have been used for analysis
of mosquito bloodmeals and the potential they might have for the future is discussed,
and the contributions that the advent of PCR has made are examined here.