Investigate insect immune priming as a translational tool to reduce mosquito vector competence
With 1 million deaths each year, mosquitoes are the deadliest human killer in the world. This is exclusively due to their vectorial capacities of transmitting, through their bites, various microbes that can cause severe diseases. Current vector control strategies are strongly impeded by the development and the increased prevalence of mosquito resistance to insecticide.
My research group aims to characterize the genetic and functional genomic basis of mosquito immunity to distinct microbes. In particular, we aim to understand the molecular basis of the mosquito immune priming response, a memory-like immune response in insects. Insect immune priming is defined as a functional state in which immune cells undergo long-lasting changes that enhance their response to a subsequent infection. In mid-long term, the knowledges and filled gap that will be acquired on the immune priming response could help us developing novel strategies to generate cross-resistances in the mosquito vectors against parasites and/or viruses they transmit, with the aim to reduce mosquito vector competence.
Another project in my group is to better characterize the interaction between the enteric microbiome and insecticide resistance.