Evaluating the effects of temperature on Zika virus replication in mosquito cells
Blanka Tesla1,2, Courtney C. Murdock1,2,3, Melinda A. Brindley1,4
1Department of Infectious Diseases, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, USA; 2Center for Tropical and Emerging Global Diseases, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, USA; 3Odum School of Ecology, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, USA; 4Department of Population Health, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, USA
Diseases such as Zika, dengue and chikungunya, once considered tropical and sub-tropical diseases, spread explosively throughout the world due to climate change and increased globalization. With half of the human population at risk, arboviral diseases represent a substantial global health burden. Temperature is one of the strongest drivers of vector-borne disease transmission due to its profound effect on ectothermic mosquito vectors, viruses, and their interaction. Arboviruses have evolved to survive and replicate across wide range of temperatures, from within invertebrate vectors to febrile mammalian hosts. There is substantial evidence of temperature effects on virus replication and dissemination inside mosquitoes. However, little is known whether temperature affects virus replication directly or indirectly through mosquito immunity, metabolism and temperature-induced stress. In order to determine the mechanisms behind temperature-induced changes in Zika transmission potential, we investigated Zika growth rates in the C6/36 mosquito cell line over different temperatures (16C, 20C, 24C, 28C, 32C, and 36C) and compared it to dengue and chikungunya. As expected, Zika, dengue and chikungunya had differential growth responses to temperature. We will further investigate what part of the virus replication cycle is mostly affected by high and low temperature exposure.