Transient introgression of Wolbachia into Aedes aegypti populations does not elicit an antibody response to Wolbachia surface protein in community members

Elvina Lee, Tran Hien Nguyen, Thu Yen Nguyen, Sinh Nam Vu, Nhu Duong Tran, Le Trung Nghia, Quang Mai Vien, Thanh Dong Nguyen, Robson Kriiger Loterio, Iñaki Iturbe-Ormaetxe, Heather A. Flores, Scott L. O’neill, Duc Anh Dang, Cameron P. Simmons, Johanna E. Fraser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Wolbachia is an endosymbiotic bacterium that can restrict the transmission of human pathogenic viruses by Aedes aegypti mosquitoes. Recent field trials have shown that dengue incidence is significantly reduced when Wolbachia is introgressed into the local Ae. aegypti population. Female Ae. aegypti are anautogenous and feed on human blood to produce viable eggs. Herein, we tested whether people who reside on Tri Nguyen Island (TNI), Vietnam developed antibodies to Wolbachia Surface Protein (WSP) following release of Wolbachia-infected Ae. aegypti, as a measure of exposure to Wolbachia. Paired blood samples were collected from 105 participants before and after mosquito releases and anti-WSP titres were measured by ELISA. We determined no change in anti-WSP titres after ~30 weeks of high levels of Wolbachia-Ae. aegypti on TNI. These data suggest that humans are not exposed to the major Wolbachia surface antigen, WSP, following introgression of Wolbachia-infected Ae. aegypti mosquitoes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number535
Number of pages13
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Aedes aegypti
  • arbovirus
  • dengue virus
  • vector biology
  • Wolbachia

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