Anopheles gambiae miRNAs as actors of defence reaction against Plasmodium invasion

Nucleic Acids Res. 2007;35(20):6953-62. doi: 10.1093/nar/gkm686. Epub 2007 Oct 12.


The path Plasmodium takes across the Anopheles midgut constitutes the major bottleneck during the malaria transmission cycle. In the present study, using a combination of shot-gun cloning and bioinformatic analysis, we have identified 18 miRNAs from Anopheles gambiae including three miRNAs unique to mosquito. Twelve of them are expressed ubiquitously across the body, independently of gender, while the other six exhibited an expression pattern restricted to the digestive system. Strikingly, the expression patterns of four miRNAs, including the three unique to mosquito, are affected by the presence of Plasmodium. We also show that knocking down Dicer1 and Ago1 mRNAs led to an increased sensitivity to Plasmodium infection. Altogether, these data support an involvement of miRNAs as new layers in the regulation of Anopheles defence reaction.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anopheles / genetics*
  • Anopheles / immunology*
  • Anopheles / parasitology
  • Digestive System / immunology
  • Digestive System / metabolism
  • Digestive System / parasitology
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Profiling*
  • Gene Library
  • Gene Silencing
  • Male
  • MicroRNAs / immunology*
  • Plasmodium / immunology*
  • Ribonuclease III / genetics


  • MicroRNAs
  • Ribonuclease III