Modelling the ecological dynamics of mosquito populations with multiple co-circulating Wolbachia strains

Ogunlade, Samson T., Adekunle, Adeshina I., McBryde, Emma S., and Meehan, Michael T. (2022) Modelling the ecological dynamics of mosquito populations with multiple co-circulating Wolbachia strains. Scientific Reports, 12. 20826.

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Wolbachia intracellular bacteria successfully reduce the transmissibility of arthropod-borne viruses (arboviruses) when introduced into virus-carrying vectors such as mosquitoes. Despite the progress made by introducing Wolbachia bacteria into the Aedes aegypti wild-type population to control arboviral infections, reports suggest that heat-induced loss-of-Wolbachia-infection as a result of climate change may reverse these gains. Novel, supplemental Wolbachia strains that are more resilient to increased temperatures may circumvent these concerns, and could potentially act synergistically with existing variants. In this article, we model the ecological dynamics among three distinct mosquito (sub)populations: a wild-type population free of any Wolbachia infection; an invading population infected with a particular Wolbachia strain; and a second invading population infected with a distinct Wolbachia strain from that of the first invader. We explore how the range of possible characteristics of each Wolbachia strain impacts mosquito prevalence. Further, we analyse the differential system governing the mosquito populations and the Wolbachia infection dynamics by computing the full set of basic and invasive reproduction numbers and use these to establish stability of identified equilibria. Our results show that releasing mosquitoes with two different strains of Wolbachia did not increase their prevalence, compared with a single-strain Wolbachia-infected mosquito introduction and only delayed Wolbachia dominance.

Item ID: 77447
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2045-2322
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Copyright Information: © The Author(s) 2022. Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2023 21:59
FoR Codes: 49 MATHEMATICAL SCIENCES > 4901 Applied mathematics > 490102 Biological mathematics @ 30%
42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4202 Epidemiology > 420205 Epidemiological modelling @ 70%
SEO Codes: 20 HEALTH > 2004 Public health (excl. specific population health) > 200404 Disease distribution and transmission (incl. surveillance and response) @ 80%
20 HEALTH > 2002 Evaluation of health and support services > 200205 Health policy evaluation @ 20%
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