Malaria vector sibling species distribution in different endemic districts of Punjab, India
Jaspreet Kaur1, Taruna Kaura2, Ayush Sharma1, Ashish Dhiman1, Mangesh K Pangotra1, Ashok K Upadhyay1, Gagandeep Grover Singh3, Surya K Sharma1
1 ICMR-National Institute of Malaria Research, Field site, Community Health Centre, Dhakoli, Zirakpur, Punjab, India
2 Department of Medical Parasitology, PGIMER, Chandigarh, India
3 Directorate of Health Services, Punjab, Parivar Kalyan Bhavan, Chandigarh, India
Surya K Sharma,
Retd. Scientist G, ICMR-National Institute of Malaria Research, Field site, Community Health Centre, Dhakoli, Zirakpur, Punjab, India.
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
Background & objectives: Malaria transmission in Punjab is mainly seasonal with variation in its endemicity that may be due to varying vector behaviour in different areas of the state, primarily attributed to the existence of sibling species complexes among the vector species. So far there is no report regarding the existence of malaria vectors sibling species in state of Punjab, therefore, the present study was planned to investigate the status of sibling species of two main vectors of malaria viz. An. culcifacies and An. fluviatilis in different districts of Punjab.
Methods: Mosquito collections were made through hand catch in the morning hours. Malaria vector species An.culicifacies and An. fluviatilis were morphologically identified and man hour density was calculated. Both the vector species were subjected to molecular assays for sibling species identification through amplification of D3 domain of 28S ribosomal DNA by Allele-specific PCR.
Results: Four sibling species of An. culicifacies, were identified viz. A, B, C and E. Species A was identified from Bhatinda, species B, C and E from. S.A.S. Nagar and species C from Hoshiarpur. Two sibling species S and T of An. fluviatilis were identified from districts S.A.S. Nagar and Rupnagar.
Interpretation & conclusion: Presence of four sibling species of An. culicifacies and two sibling species of An. fluviatilis in Punjab necessitates planning of longitudinal studies to ascertain their role in disease transmission so that appropriate interventions may be applied to achieve malaria elimination.