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The Population Structure of Glossina palpalis gambiensis from Island and Continental Locations in Coastal Guinea

Solano, P., Ravel, S., Bouyer, J., Camara, M., Kagbadouno, M. S., Dyer, Naomi, Gardes, L., Herault, D., Donnelly, Martin ORCID: and De Meeus, T. (2009) 'The Population Structure of Glossina palpalis gambiensis from Island and Continental Locations in Coastal Guinea'. PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, Vol 3, Issue 3, e392.

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We undertook a population genetics analysis of the tsetse fly Glossina palpalis gambiensis, a major vector of sleeping sickness in West Africa, using microsatellite and mitochondrial DNA markers. Our aims were to estimate effective population size and the degree of isolation between coastal sites on the mainland of Guinea and Loos Islands. The sampling locations encompassed Dubreka, the area with the highest Human African Trypanosomosis (HAT) prevalence in West Africa, mangrove and savannah sites on the mainland, and two islands, Fotoba and Kassa, within the Loos archipelago. These data are discussed with respect to the feasibility and sustainability of control strategies in those sites currently experiencing, or at risk of, sleeping sickness.

Principal Findings

We found very low migration rates between sites except between those sampled around the Dubreka area that seems to contain a widely dispersed and panmictic population. In the Kassa island samples, various effective population size estimates all converged on surprisingly small values (10, Ne, 30) that suggest either a recent bottleneck, and/or other biological or ecological factors such as strong variance in the reproductive success of individuals.


Whatever their origin, the small effective population sizes suggest high levels of inbreeding in tsetse flies within the island samples in marked contrast to the large diffuse deme in Dubreka zones. We discuss how these genetic results suggest that different tsetse control strategies should be applied on the mainland and islands.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: QX Parasitology > Protozoa > QX 70 Mastigophora. (e.g., Giardia. Trichomonas. Trypanosoma. Leishmania)
WB Practice of Medicine > Medical Climatology > WB 710 Diseases of geographic areas
WA Public Health > Preventive Medicine > WA 110 Prevention and control of communicable diseases. Transmission of infectious diseases
QX Parasitology > Insects. Other Parasites > QX 505 Diptera
WC Communicable Diseases > Tropical and Parasitic Diseases > WC 755 Epidemiology
QX Parasitology > Insects. Other Parasites > QX 650 Insect vectors
WA Public Health > WA 105 Epidemiology
Faculty: Department: Groups (2002 - 2012) > Vector Group
Digital Object Identifer (DOI):
Depositing User: Users 183 not found.
Date Deposited: 01 Mar 2010 16:34
Last Modified: 16 Sep 2019 09:16


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