Natural infectivity of Anopheles species from the Pacific and Atlantic Regions of Colombia

Lina A. Gutiérrez, Nelson Naranjo, Luz Marina Jaramillo, Carlos Muskus, Shirley Luckhart, Jan E. Conn, Margarita M. Correa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle in an indexed scientific journalpeer-review

63 Scopus citations


Malaria is an important public health problem in Colombia. Among the major vectors in Colombia, Anopheles albimanus is recognized for its importance on the Pacific Coast where it is the predominant species; it is also found in the Atlantic Coast, although its vectorial role in this region is not clear. We examined the occurrence of An. albimanus in four localities of the Pacific and three of the Atlantic Coast. Morphological identification of problematic specimens was confirmed by a molecular assay. All identified mosquitoes at these sites, including An. albimanus, were also tested for malaria parasite infection. From 12,189 anophelines collected, 6370 were from the Pacific Coast, and corresponded to 99% An. albimanus, 0.8% Anopheles neivai, and three other species at <0.2%. From the Atlantic Coast we identified 5819 specimens with 61% An. albimanus, 36% Anopheles triannulatus s.l. and five other species at <2%. In both coasts, species present at lower percentages included several incriminated as vectors in neighboring countries. Six Pacific Coast specimens were infected with malaria parasites: four An. albimanus, two with Plasmodium vivax VK247, one with P. vivax VK210 and one with Plasmodium falciparum; two An. neivai with P. falciparum. Our data support the continued predominance of An. albimanus in the Pacific Coast, and demonstrate that this species is the most abundant in the Atlantic Coast as well.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)99-105
Number of pages7
JournalActa Tropica
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 2008
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank people who cooperated in collection of specimens at the localities included in this study and staff members of the Host-Parasite Division of the Molecular Microbiology Group for their help and cooperation in the different assays. This study was supported by COLCIENCIAS (Grant number 1115-05-16879). Additional support for non-overlapping, complementary work was provided by Comité para el Desarrollo de la Investigación, CODI-Universidad de Antioquia (8700-039; E-01233) and Asociación Colombiana de Infectología, ACIN.


  • Anopheles
  • Colombia
  • Malaria
  • Natural infectivity
  • Plasmodium


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