Gene expression changes in the salivary glands of Anopheles coluzzii elicited by Plasmodium berghei infection

Renato Pinheiro-Silva, Lara Borges, Luís Pedro Coelho, Alejandro Cabezas-Cruz, James J. Valdés, Virgílio Do Rosário, José De La Fuente, Ana Domingos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)
16 Downloads (Pure)


Background: Malaria is a devastating infectious disease caused by Plasmodium parasites transmitted through the bites of infected Anopheles mosquitoes. Salivary glands are the only mosquito tissue invaded by Plasmodium sporozoites, being a key stage for the effective parasite transmission, making the study of Anopheles sialome highly relevant. Methods: RNA-sequencing was used to compare differential gene expression in salivary glands of uninfected and Plasmodium berghei-infected Anopheles coluzzii mosquitoes. RNA-seq results were validated by quantitative RT-PCR. The transmembrane glucose transporter gene AGAP007752 was selected for functional analysis by RNA interference. The effect of gene silencing on infection level was evaluated. The putative function and tertiary structure of the protein was assessed. Results: RNA-seq data showed that 2588 genes were differentially expressed in mosquitoes salivary glands in response to P. berghei infection, being 1578 upregulated and 1010 downregulated. Metabolism, Immunity, Replication/Transcription/Translation, Proteolysis and Transport were the mosquito gene functional classes more affected by parasite infection. Endopeptidase coding genes were the most abundant within the differentially expressed genes in infected salivary glands (P∈

Original languageEnglish
Article number485
JournalParasites & Vectors
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 23 Sep 2015


  • Anopheles coluzzii
  • Glucose transporter
  • Plasmodium berghei
  • RNA-seq
  • RNAi
  • Salivary glands
  • Sporozoite


Dive into the research topics of 'Gene expression changes in the salivary glands of Anopheles coluzzii elicited by Plasmodium berghei infection'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this