Anopheles culicifacies complex: Geographical distribution of sibling species and existing methods for their identification

B.G.D.N.K. de Silva


Meaningful epidemiological studies and effective vector control programmes depend on efficientmethods for differentiating among major vector, poor vector and non-vector of anophelinespecies complexes. Anopheles culicifacies, has a wide distribution in India, extending toEthiopia, Yemen, Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan in the West and Bangladesh, Myanmar,Thailand, Laos and Vietnam in the East. It is also found in Nepal and Southern China to theNorth and extends to Sri Lanka in the South. This species exist as a complex of five siblingspecies provisionally designated as A, B, C, D and E. Species A and B are predominantin Northern and Southern part of India whereas species B is recorded all over the Indiansubcontinent. Species B and E are found in Sri Lanka to date. Various methods and techniqueshave been used for identifying sibling species ranging from crossing experiments cytogenetics,isoenzymes, hydrocarbon profile, DNA probes, rDNA-PCR, mt DNA-PC'R and RAPD-PCR.Studies of the suitability among different methods delineating the complex of An. culicifacies,the major malaria vector, mainly in the Indian subcontinent and in Sri Lanka have been discussedhere.
Key words : Anopheles culicifacies, mosquito control


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