The mosquito Culex (Melanoconion) taeniopus is a proven vector of enzootic Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus (VEEV) subtype IE in Central America. It has been shown to be highly susceptible to infection by this subtype, and conversely to be highly refractory to infection by other VEEV subtypes. During the 1990s in southern coastal Mexico, two VEE epizootics in horses were attributed to subtype IE VEEV These outbreaks were associated with VEEV strains with an altered infection phenotype for the epizootic mosquito vector, Aedes (Ochlerotatus) taeniorhynchus. To determine the infectivity for the enzootic vector, Culex taeniopus, mosquitoes from a recently established colony were orally exposed to VEEV strains from the outbreak. The equine-virulent strains exhibited high infectivity and transmission potential comparable to a traditional enzootic subtype IE VEEV strain. Thus, subtype IE VEEV strains in Chiapas are able to efficiently infect enzootic and epizootic vectors and cause morbidity and mortality in horses.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases