Chikungunya, Zika, Mayaro, and Equine Encephalitis virus detection in adult Culicinae from South Central Mato Grosso, Brazil, during the rainy season of 2018

Braz J Microbiol. 2021 Nov 17. doi: 10.1007/s42770-021-00646-5. Online ahead of print.


Introduction: Several arboviruses causing human disease have been reported in Brazil. In nature, arboviruses maintain a lifecycle involving vertebrates and vectors, which may contribute for periodical reemergence of those of public health concern in tropical regions, as Mato Grosso State (MT). In this study, we searched for arboviruses in mosquito body pools sampled during the rainy season of 2018 in 21 bird watching points of Cuiabá and Varzea Grande, South Central MT.

Methods: In total, 2873 (57%) males and 2167 (43%) females belonging to six urban and sylvatic mosquito genera allocated to 398 pools were subjected to RNA extraction and RT-PCR for arboviruses. Positive pools were subjected to virus isolation in C6/36 cells.

Results: A total of 102/398 pools, 66/233 (29.6%) of females, and 36/165 (21.8%) of males, mostly sampled in May (31/102), were positive for arboviruses. Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) was distributed in 19 points, Zika virus (ZIKV) was found in 14 points, Mayaro virus (MAYV) in 10 points, and East Equine encephalitis virus (EEEV) in three points. Culex quinquefasciatus pools (39/89 of females and 24/99 of males) were positive for CHIKV, ZIKV, and MAYV; Aedes (Stg) aegypti pools (11/46 of females and 12/33 of males) for CHIKV, ZIKV, MAYV, and EEEV; Aedes albopictus female pools (8/29) for CHIKV, ZIKV, and EEEV; and Psorophora albigenu (2/12) and Psorophora ferox female pools (4/16) for CHIKV.

Conclusions: Arbovirus molecular detection in mosquito populations varies considerable between geographical regions and epidemics, influenced by genetic characteristics and microbiome interference on virus replication. Although infected females are responsible for the transmission to vertebrates during bloodfeeding, male infection by CHIKV, ZIKV, and MAYV resultant from vertical route could lead to interepidemic maintenance of these arboviruses in their natural reservoirs.

Keywords: Aedes; Arbovirus surveillance; Culex; Culicidae; Psorophora.