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Population structure of Anopheles gambiae along the Kenyan coast.

  • Author(s): Midega, Janet T
  • Muturi, Ephantus J
  • Baliraine, Frederick N
  • Mbogo, Charles M
  • Githure, John
  • Beier, John C
  • Yan, Guiyun
  • et al.

In the tropics, Anopheles mosquito abundance is greatest during the wet season and decline significantly during the dry season as larval habitats shrink. Population size fluctuations between wet and dry seasons may lead to variation in distribution of specific alleles within natural Anopheles populations, and a possible effect on the population genetic structure. We used 11 microsatellite markers to examine the effect of seasonality on population genetic structure of Anopheles gambiae s.s. at two sites along the Kenyan coast. All loci were highly polymorphic with the total number of alleles for pooled samples ranging from 7 (locus ND36) to 21 (locus AG2H46). Significant estimates of genetic differentiation between sites and seasons were observed suggesting the existence of spatio-temporal subpopulation structuring. Genetic bottleneck analysis showed no indication of excess heterozygosity in any of the populations. These findings suggest that along the Kenyan coast, seasonality and site specific ecological factors can alter the genetic structure of A. gambiae s.s. populations.

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