A bioinformatics approach for integrated transcriptomic and proteomic comparative analyses of model and non-sequenced anopheline vectors of human malaria parasites

Mol Cell Proteomics. 2013 Jan;12(1):120-31. doi: 10.1074/mcp.M112.019596. Epub 2012 Oct 17.


Malaria morbidity and mortality caused by both Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax extend well beyond the African continent, and although P. vivax causes between 80 and 300 million severe cases each year, vivax transmission remains poorly understood. Plasmodium parasites are transmitted by Anopheles mosquitoes, and the critical site of interaction between parasite and host is at the mosquito's luminal midgut brush border. Although the genome of the "model" African P. falciparum vector, Anopheles gambiae, has been sequenced, evolutionary divergence limits its utility as a reference across anophelines, especially non-sequenced P. vivax vectors such as Anopheles albimanus. Clearly, technologies and platforms that bridge this substantial scientific gap are required in order to provide public health scientists with key transcriptomic and proteomic information that could spur the development of novel interventions to combat this disease. To our knowledge, no approaches have been published that address this issue. To bolster our understanding of P. vivax-An. albimanus midgut interactions, we developed an integrated bioinformatic-hybrid RNA-Seq-LC-MS/MS approach involving An. albimanus transcriptome (15,764 contigs) and luminal midgut subproteome (9,445 proteins) assembly, which, when used with our custom Diptera protein database (685,078 sequences), facilitated a comparative proteomic analysis of the midgut brush borders of two important malaria vectors, An. gambiae and An. albimanus.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Anopheles / genetics*
  • Anopheles / parasitology
  • Chromatography, Liquid
  • Computational Biology*
  • Databases, Protein
  • Host-Parasite Interactions
  • Humans
  • Insect Proteins / analysis*
  • Insect Proteins / chemistry
  • Insect Vectors / genetics*
  • Insect Vectors / parasitology
  • Malaria / parasitology
  • Microvilli
  • Plasmodium falciparum
  • Plasmodium vivax
  • Proteome / analysis*
  • Proteomics
  • RNA / analysis*
  • Tandem Mass Spectrometry
  • Transcriptome


  • Insect Proteins
  • Proteome
  • RNA