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Mosquito Antiviral piRNA Pathway

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






Project "MAPP" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
postcode: G12 8QQ

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country United Kingdom [UK]
 Project website
 Total cost 195˙454 €
 EC max contribution 195˙454 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.3.2. (Nurturing excellence by means of cross-border and cross-sector mobility)
 Code Call H2020-MSCA-IF-2014
 Funding Scheme MSCA-IF-EF-ST
 Starting year 2015
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2015-09-01   to  2017-08-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    UNIVERSITY OF GLASGOW UK (GLASGOW) coordinator 195˙454.00


 Project objective

Mosquitoes transmit several medically and economically important ARthropod-BOrne (arbo)viruses to mammals (including humans), such as dengue virus and chikungunya virus (CHIKV). Unlike infection in their mammalian host, infection in their arthropod vector is apathogenic and persistent due to the interplay between the virus and the innate immune responses. The main antiviral mechanism in mosquitoes is the sequence specific RNA break down mechanism- RNA interference (RNAi), specifically the 21 nucleotide (nt) long small interfering (si)RNAs are considered to play a key role; however, siRNAs are not likely to be essential for the establishment of persistent viral infection. Recently small RNA molecules derived from different pathway have been reported to have an antiviral role in aedine mosquitoes and derived cell lines: PIWI interacting (pi)RNAs (24-29 nt). Persistent infection ensures that mosquitoes remain infectious and if piRNAs control this process, they could play a key part in regulating subsequent arbovirus transmission to humans. Little is known about the piRNA pathway in mosquitoes and even less about its interaction with arbovirus infections. Most of the work has focused on the identification and analysis of (viral specific) small RNAs (siRNA and piRNAs) in infected mosquitoes, but little on the proteins and the protein-RNA interactions involved in these processes. The proposed research project will use a multidisciplinary approach that involves molecular virology with CHIKV, quantitative proteomics, RNA sequencing and knock down experiments in Aedes aegypti derived cells and mosquitoes to comprehensively understand for the first time the piRNA pathway, its involvement and importance to regulate arbovirus infections in aedine mosquitoes. The findings will extend our knowledge on the interactions between arboviruses and their mosquito vector and generate information that could be used in novel disease-spread control strategies.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2017 Margus Varjak, Kevin Maringer, Mick Watson, Vattipally B. Sreenu, Anthony C. Fredericks, Emilie Pondeville, Claire L. Donald, Jelle Sterk, Joy Kean, Marie Vazeille, Anna-Bella Failloux, Alain Kohl, Esther Schnettler
Aedes aegypti Piwi4 Is a Noncanonical PIWI Protein Involved in Antiviral Responses
published pages: e00144-17, ISSN: 2379-5042, DOI: 10.1128/mSphere.00144-17
mSphere 2/3 2019-07-24

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