Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

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    We will mail you new results for this query: keywords==West Nile virus
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Risk factors associated with sustained circulation of six zoonotic arboviruses: A systematic review for selection of surveillance sites in non-endemic areas
Esser, Helen J. ; Mögling, Ramona ; Cleton, Natalie B. ; Jeugd, Henk Van Der; Sprong, Hein ; Stroo, Arjan ; Koopmans, Marion P.G. ; Boer, Willem F. De; Reusken, Chantal B.E.M. - \ 2019
Parasites & Vectors 12 (2019)1. - ISSN 1756-3305
Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever virus - Japanese encephalitis virus - Louping-ill virus - Rift Valley fever virus - Tick-borne encephalitis virus - West Nile virus

Arboviruses represent a significant burden to public health and local economies due to their ability to cause unpredictable and widespread epidemics. To maximize early detection of arbovirus emergence in non-endemic areas, surveillance efforts should target areas where circulation is most likely. However, identifying such hotspots of potential emergence is a major challenge. The ecological conditions leading to arbovirus outbreaks are shaped by complex interactions between the virus, its vertebrate hosts, arthropod vector, and abiotic environment that are often poorly understood. Here, we systematically review the ecological risk factors associated with the circulation of six arboviruses that are of considerable concern to northwestern Europe. These include three mosquito-borne viruses (Japanese encephalitis virus, West Nile virus, Rift Valley fever virus) and three tick-borne viruses (Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever virus, tick-borne encephalitis virus, and louping-ill virus). We consider both intrinsic (e.g. vector and reservoir host competence) and extrinsic (e.g. temperature, precipitation, host densities, land use) risk factors, identify current knowledge gaps, and discuss future directions. Our systematic review provides baseline information for the identification of regions and habitats that have suitable ecological conditions for endemic circulation, and therefore may be used to target early warning surveillance programs aimed at detecting multi-virus and/or arbovirus emergence.

Effect of overwintering on survival and vector competence of the West Nile virus vector Culex pipiens
Koenraadt, Constantianus J.M. ; Möhlmann, Tim W.R. ; Verhulst, Niels O. ; Spitzen, Jeroen ; Vogels, Chantal B.F. - \ 2019
Parasites & Vectors 12 (2019)1. - ISSN 1756-3305
Diapause - Longevity - Mosquito - Overwintering - Survival - Vector competence - West Nile virus

Background: West Nile virus (WNV) is a mosquito-borne virus that is mainly transmitted among birds by Culex pipiens mosquitoes. The species Cx. pipiens consists of two biotypes named pipiens and molestus, which together can form hybrids. One of the major distinctions between the biotypes is their overwintering behaviour. Adults of biotype pipiens diapause during winter, whereas biotype molestus remains actively blood-feeding. Diapausing may affect survival and vector competence of biotype pipiens. The aims of this study were therefore to identify the biotype composition of diapausing Cx. pipiens mosquitoes, to quantify survival throughout the autumn and winter months, and to determine effects of overwintering on vector competence of emerging Cx. pipiens mosquitoes for WNV. Methods: Diapausing mosquitoes were collected at two typical overwintering locations in the Netherlands. A selection of Cx. pipiens mosquitoes was identified to biotype using real-time PCR. Survival of diapausing Cx. pipiens mosquitoes during autumn and winter was monitored by placing cages with either field-collected or laboratory-reared females in houses and sheds. Vector competence of field-collected (diapausing) and laboratory-reared (non-diapausing) Cx. pipiens mosquitoes was determined to gain insight in the effect of overwintering on WNV transmission. Results: The majority (92%) of diapausing Cx. pipiens females were identified as biotype pipiens. More than 70% of diapausing Cx. pipiens mosquitoes was able to survive for more than four months in sheds, whereas diapausing in houses resulted in 100% mortality in that same period. In contrast, non-diapausing Cx. pipiens biotype pipiens mosquitoes reared in the laboratory died within a week in both houses and sheds. Vector competence of Cx. pipiens mosquitoes that had diapaused during the autumn and winter months was comparable to non-diapausing laboratory-reared mosquitoes. Conclusions: This study confirms that the majority of Cx. pipiens mosquitoes in their typical overwintering site belongs to the pipiens biotype. It shows that more than two-third of diapausing Cx. pipiens mosquitoes is able to survive winter under sheltered winter conditions. Finally, vector competence for WNV of mosquitoes that emerge from overwintering sites is not affected by their relatively old age.

Mosquito Small RNA Responses to West Nile and Insect-Specific Virus Infections in Aedes and Culex Mosquito Cells
Göertz, Giel P. ; Miesen, Pascal ; Overheul, Gijs J. ; Rij, Ronald P. van; Oers, Monique M. van; Pijlman, Gorben P. - \ 2019
Viruses 11 (2019)3. - ISSN 1999-4915
de novo assembly - insect-specific viruses - mosquito cells - next-generation sequencing - PIWI-interacting RNAs - RNAi - small RNA - small-interfering RNAs - virus discovery - West Nile virus

Small RNA mediated responses are essential for antiviral defence in mosquitoes, however, they appear to differ per virus-vector combination. To further investigate the diversity of small RNA responses against viruses in mosquitoes, we applied a small RNA deep sequencing approach on five mosquito cell lines: Culex tarsalis CT cells, Aedes albopictus U4.4 and C6/36 cells, Ae. aegypti Aag2 cells (cleared from cell fusing agent virus and Culex Y virus (CYV) by repetitive dsRNA transfections) and Ae. pseudoscutellaris AP-61 cells. De novo assembly of small RNAs revealed the presence of Phasi Charoen-like virus (PCLV), Calbertado virus, Flock House virus and a novel narnavirus in CT cells, CYV in U4.4 cells, and PCLV in Aag2 cells, whereas no insect-specific viruses (ISVs) were detected in C6/36 and AP-61 cells. Next, we investigated the small RNA responses to the identified ISVs and to acute infection with the arthropod-borne West Nile virus (WNV). We demonstrate that AP-61 and C6/36 cells do not produce siRNAs to WNV infection, suggesting that AP-61, like C6/36, are Dicer-2 deficient. CT cells produced a strong siRNA response to the persistent ISVs and acute WNV infection. Interestingly, CT cells also produced viral PIWI-interacting (pi)RNAs to PCLV, but not to WNV or any of the other ISVs. In contrast, in U4.4 and Aag2 cells, WNV siRNAs, and pi-like RNAs without typical ping-pong piRNA signature were observed, while this signature was present in PCLV piRNAs in Aag2 cells. Together, our results demonstrate that mosquito small RNA responses are strongly dependent on both the mosquito cell type and/or the mosquito species and family of the infecting virus.

Serologic evidence of West Nile virus and Usutu virus infections in Eurasian coots in the Netherlands
Lim, S.M. ; Geervliet, M. ; Verhagen, J.H. ; Müskens, G.J.D.M. ; Majoor, F.A. ; Osterhaus, Albert D.M.E. ; Martina, Byron E. - \ 2018
Zoonoses and Public Health 65 (2018)1. - ISSN 1863-1959 - p. 96 - 102.
Reservoir hosts - Surveillance - Usutu virus - Vector-borne diseases - West Nile virus - Wild birds

West Nile virus (WNV) and Usutu virus (USUV) are arboviruses that are maintained in enzootic transmission cycles between mosquitoes and birds and are occasionally transmitted to mammals. As arboviruses are currently expanding their geographic range and emerging in often unpredictable locations, surveillance is considered an important element of preparedness. To determine whether sera collected from resident and migratory birds in the Netherlands as part of avian influenza surveillance would also represent an effective source for proactive arbovirus surveillance, a random selection of such sera was screened for WNV antibodies using a commercial ELISA. In addition, sera of jackdaws and carrion crows captured for previous experimental infection studies were added to the selection. Of the 265 screened serum samples, 27 were found to be WNV-antibody-positive, and subsequent cross-neutralization experiments using WNV and USUV confirmed that five serum samples were positive for only WNV-neutralizing antibodies and seven for only USUV. The positive birds consisted of four Eurasian coots (Fulica atra) and one carrion crow (Corvus corone) for WNV, of which the latter may suggest local presence of the virus, and only Eurasian coots for USUV. As a result, the screening of a small selection of serum samples originally collected for avian influenza surveillance demonstrated a seroprevalence of 1.6% for WNV and 2.8% for USUV, suggesting that this sustained infrastructure could serve as a useful source for future surveillance of arboviruses such as WNV and USUV in the Netherlands.

Vector competence of northern European Culex pipiens biotypes and hybrids for West Nile virus is differentially affected by temperature
Vogels, Chantal B.F. ; Fros, Jelke J. ; Goertz, Giel ; Pijlman, Gorben P. ; Koenraadt, Sander - \ 2016
Parasites & Vectors 9 (2016)1. - ISSN 1756-3305
Arbovirus - Culex - Infection - Temperature - Vector competence - West Nile virus

Background: Outbreaks of West Nile virus (WNV) have not occurred in northern Europe despite nearby circulation of WNV in the southern part of the continent. The main vector for WNV, the mosquito Culex (Cx.) pipiens, consists of two behaviorally distinct biotypes, pipiens and molestus, which can form hybrids. Although temperature has been shown to influence vector competence of Cx. pipiens for WNV and biotypes are differentially susceptible towards infection, the interaction between the two has not been elucidated. Methods: We determined vector competence of the Cx. pipiens biotypes and hybrids, after 14 days of incubation at 18, 23 and 28 °C. Mosquitoes were orally infected by providing an infectious blood meal or by injecting WNV directly in the thorax. Infection and transmission rates were determined by testing the bodies and saliva for WNV presence. In addition, titers of mosquitoes with WNV-positive bodies and saliva samples were determined. Results: Orally infected biotype pipiens and hybrids showed significantly increased transmission rates with higher temperatures, up to 32 and 14 %, respectively. In contrast, the molestus biotype had an overall transmission rate of 10 %, which did not increase with temperature. All mosquitoes that were infected via WNV injections had (close to) 100 % infection and transmission rates, suggesting an important role of the mosquito midgut barrier. We found no effect of increasing temperature on viral titers. Conclusions: Temperature differentially affected vector competence of the Cx. pipiens biotypes. This shows the importance of accounting for biotype-by-temperature interactions, which influence the outcomes of vector competence studies. Vector competence studies with Cx. pipiens mosquitoes differentiated to the biotype level are essential for proper WNV risk assessments.

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