Ecology and Evolution of Invasive Mosquito Disease Vectors
This presentation will describe interspecific interactions and trait evolution associated with encounters in nature between Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus, the most important vectors of dengue and chikungunya viruses. Effects of larval competition on dengue transmission in nature will also be discussed.
Mosquito biology, especially ecology and behavior, is the focus of Phil Lounibos’s laboratory located in Vero Beach, Florida.
Phil Lounibos has studied insect ecology and behavior for most of his life. He earned his Ph.D. at Harvard before moving to work at the International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE) Coastal Research Station in Mombasa, Kenya to perform research on treehole mosquito ecology and to lead a team of investigators testing genetic methods for control of the yellow fever mosquito in East African villages. At the Florida Medical Entomology Laboratory (FMEL) since 1977, he continues to conduct field research on mosquitos and increasingly mentors postdoctoral fellows and graduate students, lecturing in departmental courses in Gainesville, and developing short courses for FMEL. Current research on the Invasion Biology of Aedes albopictus tests hypotheses about the roles of predation, competition, climate, and genetic factors in the establishment of recent populations of this dengue and Chikungunya vector in the Americas.