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      British Container Breeding Mosquitoes: The Impact of Urbanisation and Climate Change on Community Composition and Phenology


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          The proliferation of artificial container habitats in urban areas has benefitted urban adaptable mosquito species globally. In areas where mosquitoes transmit viruses and parasites, it can promote vector population productivity and fuel mosquito-borne disease outbreaks. In Britain, storage of water in garden water butts is increasing, potentially expanding mosquito larval habitats and influencing population dynamics and mosquito-human contact. Here we show that the community composition, abundance and phenology of mosquitoes breeding in experimental water butt containers were influenced by urbanisation. Mosquitoes in urban containers were less species-rich but present in significantly higher densities (100.4±21.3) per container than those in rural containers (77.7±15.1). Urban containers were dominated by Culex pipiens (a potential vector of West Nile Virus [WNV]) and appear to be increasingly exploited by Anopheles plumbeus (a human-biting potential WNV and malaria vector). Culex phenology was influenced by urban land use type, with peaks in larval abundances occurring earlier in urban than rural containers. Among other factors, this was associated with an urban heat island effect which raised urban air and water temperatures by 0.9°C and 1.2°C respectively. Further increases in domestic water storage, particularly in urban areas, in combination with climate changes will likely alter mosquito population dynamics in the UK.

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          Costs analysis of the treatment of imported malaria

          Background To document the status of imported malaria infections and estimate the costs of treating of patients hospitalized with the diagnosis of imported malaria in the Slovak Republic during 2003 to 2008. Case study Calculating and comparing the direct and indirect costs of treatment of patients diagnosed with imported malaria (ICD-10: B50 - B54) who used and not used chemoprophylaxis. The target sample included 19 patients diagnosed with imported malaria from 2003 to 2008, with 11 whose treatment did not include chemoprophylaxis and eight whose treatment did. Results The mean direct cost of malaria treatment for patients without chemoprophylaxis was 1,776.0 EUR, and the mean indirect cost 524.2 EUR. In patients with chemoprophylaxis the mean direct cost was 405.6 EUR, and the mean indirect cost 257.4 EUR. Conclusions The analysis confirmed statistically-significant differences between the direct and indirect costs of treatment with and without chemoprophylaxis for patients with imported malaria.
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            Urban domestic gardens (V): relationships between landcover composition, housing and landscape

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              Potential transmission of West Nile virus in the British Isles: an ecological review of candidate mosquito bridge vectors.

              West Nile virus (WNV) transmitted by mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae) infects various vertebrates, being pathogenic for birds, horses and humans. After its discovery in tropical Africa, sporadic outbreaks of WNV occurred during recent decades in Eurasia, but not the British Isles. WNV reached New York in 1999 and spread to California by 2003, causing widespread outbreaks of West Nile encephalitis across North America, transmitted by many species of mosquitoes, mainly Culex spp. The periodic reappearance of WNV in parts of continental Europe (from southern France to Romania) gives rise to concern over the possibility of WNV invading the British Isles. The British Isles have about 30 endemic mosquito species, several with seasonal abundance and other eco-behavioural characteristics predisposing them to serve as potential WNV bridge vectors from birds to humans. These include: the predominantly ornithophilic Culex pipiens L. and its anthropophilic biotype molestus Forskal; tree-hole adapted Anopheles plumbeus Stephens; saltmarsh-adapted Ochlerotatus caspius Pallas, Oc. detritus Haliday and Oc. dorsalis (Meigen); Coquillettidia richiardii Ficalbi, Culiseta annulata Schrank and Cs. morsitans (Theobald) from vegetated freshwater pools; Aedes cinereus Meigen, Oc. cantans Meigen and Oc. punctor Kirby from seasonal woodland pools. Those underlined have been found carrying WNV in other countries (12 species), including the rarer British species Aedes vexans (Meigen), Culex europaeus Ramos et al., Cx. modestus Ficalbi and Oc. sticticus (Meigen) as well as the Anopheles maculipennis Meigen complex (mainly An. atroparvus van Thiel and An. messeae Falleroni in Britain). Those implicated as key vectors of WNV in Europe are printed bold (four species). So far there is no proof of any arbovirus transmission by mosquitoes in the British Isles, although antibodies to Sindbis, Tahyna, Usutu and West Nile viruses have been detected in British birds. Neighbouring European countries have enzootic WNV and human infections transmitted by mosquito species that are present in the British Isles. However, except for localized urban infestations of Cx. pipiens biotype molestus that can be readily eliminated, there appear to be few situations in the British Isles where humans and livestock are exposed to sustained risks of exposure to potential WNV vectors. Monitoring of mosquitoes and arbovirus surveillance are required to guard the British Isles against WNV outbreaks and introduction of more anthropophilic mosquitoes such as Stegomyia albopicta (Skuse) and Ochlerotatus japonicus (Theobald) that have recently invaded Europe, since they transmit arboviruses elsewhere.

                Author and article information

                Role: Editor
                PLoS One
                PLoS ONE
                PLoS ONE
                Public Library of Science (San Francisco, USA )
                23 April 2014
                : 9
                : 4
                Environmental and Evolutionary Biology, School of Biological Sciences, University of Reading, Reading, England
                University of Western Ontario, Canada
                Author notes

                Competing Interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.

                Conceived and designed the experiments: ST AC. Performed the experiments: ST AC. Analyzed the data: ST AC. Contributed reagents/materials/analysis tools: ST AC. Wrote the paper: ST AC.


                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

                Page count
                Pages: 7
                Susannah Townroe was supported by a NERC studentship number DTG 2010-14 ( http://www.nerc.ac.uk/). The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.
                Research Article
                Biology and Life Sciences
                Behavioral Ecology
                Community Ecology
                Freshwater Ecology
                Global Change Ecology
                Industrial Ecology
                Population Ecology
                Spatial and Landscape Ecology
                Terrestrial Ecology
                Urban Ecology
                Population Biology
                Population Dynamics
                Ecology and Environmental Sciences
                Medicine and Health Sciences
                Disease Vectors
                Vector Biology
                Infectious Diseases



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