Different mosquito species host Wickerhamomyces anomalus (Pichia anomala): Perspectives on vector-borne diseases symbiotic control

Irene Ricci, Michela Mosca, Matteo Valzano, Claudia Damiani, Patrizia Scuppa, Paolo Rossi, Elena Crotti, Alessia Cappelli, Ulisse Ulissi, Aida Capone, Fulvio Esposito, Alberto Alma, Mauro Mandrioli, Luciano Sacchi, Claudio Bandi, Daniele Daffonchio, Guido Favia*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

58 Scopus citations


The genetic manipulation of the microbial community associated with hematophagus insects is particularly relevant for public health applications. Within mosquito populations, this relationship has been overlooked until recently. New advances in molecular biotechnology propose the genetic manipulation of mosquito symbionts to prevent the transmission of pathogens to humans by interfering with the obligatory life cycle stages within the insect through the use of effector molecules. This approach, defined as 'paratransgenesis', has opened the way for the investigation and characterization of microbes residing in the mosquito body, particularly those localised within the gut. Some interesting bacteria have been identified as candidates for genetic modification, however, endosymbiotic yeasts remain largely unexplored with little information on the symbiotic relationships to date. Here we review the recent report of symbiotic relationship between Wickerhamomyces anomalus (Pichia anomala) and several mosquito vector species as promising methods to implement control of mosquito-borne diseases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)43-50
Number of pages8
JournalAntonie van Leeuwenhoek, International Journal of General and Molecular Microbiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2011
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgments I.R. was funded by ‘‘Compagnia di San Paolo’’ in the context of the Italian Malaria Network. E.C. and P.R. received a travel Grant from the COST Action FA0701. The research activity was supported by Firb-Ideas (Grant RBID082MLZ) and Prin 2007 (Grant 2007PK2HB7-002) both from the Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research (MIUR) to G.F.We thank Chenoa De Freece for English revision of the manuscript.


  • Aedes
  • Anopheles
  • Endosymbionts
  • Gonads
  • Insects
  • Malaria
  • Microbial community
  • Midgut
  • Mosquito
  • Paratransgenesis
  • Pichia anomala
  • Symbiotic control
  • Vector-borne diseases
  • Wickerhamomyces anomalus
  • Yeast

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology


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