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Population biology and molecular genetics of vectorial capacity in Anopheles gambiae: targeting reproductive behaviour and immunity for transmission-refractory interventions (MALVECBLOK)
Start date: Jan 1, 2009, End date: Jun 30, 2012 PROJECT  FINISHED 

"Malaria, one of the world’s most devastating diseases, is caused by protozoan parasites of the genus Plasmodium and is obligatory transmitted to humans by anopheline mosquitoes. The African mosquito species Anopheles gambiae s.s., is the major vector of this disease. Research groups from 3 European countries and 3 African teams will integrate their resources and scientific expertise in malaria research to expand knowledge of mosquito biology and of vector-parasite interactions, exploiting the opportunities provided by the recently available genome information and technological developments for mosquito vectors. The joint scientific program of the MALVECBLOK Consortium integrates for the first time three crucial aspects of biology of An. gambiae: reproduction, immunity and population biology, with the aim to ultimately provide novel concepts and targets for malaria control. The main objectives will address: (i) The molecular bases of reproductive biology of the mosquito vector, and its effects on immunity and Plasmodium transmission; (ii) The molecular mechanisms which determine the mosquito immune status and regulate Plasmodium sporogony and transmission, in both laboratory settings and natural populations; (iii) The role of genetic polymorphism in genes controlling reproduction and immunity on structure of mosquito populations and malaria transmission in Africa. In order to reach these objectives, MALVECBLOK will employ a number of concerted strategies in support of its 3-year agenda. Special attention will be given to cutting-edge training opportunities and sharing of resources, by implementing interactive programmes for the training and exchange of personnel at all levels, and by rationalising and coordinating investment. The innovative knowledge generated under this trans-disciplinary project will promote European scientific competitiveness and will impact global health issues."

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