Odours of Plasmodium falciparum-infected participants influence mosquito-host interactions

A - Papers appearing in refereed journals

De Boar, J. G., Robinson, A., Powers, S. J., Burgers, S. L. G. E., Caulfield, J. C., Birkett, M. A., Smallegange, R. C., Van Genderen, P. J. J., Bousema, T., Sauerwein, R. W., Pickett, J. A., Takken, W. and Logan, J. G. 2017. Odours of Plasmodium falciparum-infected participants influence mosquito-host interactions. Scientific Reports. 7, p. 9283.

AuthorsDe Boar, J. G., Robinson, A., Powers, S. J., Burgers, S. L. G. E., Caulfield, J. C., Birkett, M. A., Smallegange, R. C., Van Genderen, P. J. J., Bousema, T., Sauerwein, R. W., Pickett, J. A., Takken, W. and Logan, J. G.
Abstract

Malaria parasites are thought to infuence mosquito attraction to human hosts, a phenomenon that
may enhance parasite transmission. This is likely mediated by alterations in host odour because of its
importance in mosquito host-searching behaviour. Here, we report that the human skin odour profle is
afected by malaria infection. We compared the chemical composition and attractiveness to Anopheles
coluzzii mosquitoes of skin odours from participants that were infected by Controlled Human Malaria
Infection with Plasmodium falciparum. Skin odour composition difered between parasitologically
negative and positive samples, with positive samples collected on average two days after parasites
emerged from the liver into the blood, being associated with low densities of asexual parasites and the
absence of gametocytes. We found a signifcant reduction in mosquito attraction to skin odour during
infection for one experiment, but not in a second experiment, possibly due to diferences in parasite
strain. However, it does raise the possibility that infection can afect mosquito behaviour. Indeed,
several volatile compounds were identifed that can infuence mosquito behaviour, including 2- and
3-methylbutanal, 3-hydroxy-2-butanone, and 6-methyl-5-hepten-2-one. To better understand the
impact of our fndings on Plasmodium transmission, controlled studies are needed in participants with
gametocytes and higher parasite densities.

Year of Publication2017
JournalScientific Reports
Journal citation7, p. 9283
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1038/s41598-017-08978-9
Open accessPublished as ‘gold’ (paid) open access
FunderBiotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online24 Aug 2017
Publication process dates
Accepted17 Jul 2017
PublisherNature Publishing Group
Copyright licenseCC BY
ISSN2045-2322

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