For a tiny mosquito in a wide world, finding a mating partner is a challenge. The same way humans gather at parties, mosquitoes aggregate in swarms to find a mate. Mating swarms are fascinating entities formed by hundreds of mosquitoes; they take place in the same locations every day. Disrupting swarms could have a major impact on controlling disease-transmitting mosquitoes. But we hardly know anything about the endogenous molecular machinery that induce mosquito swarming behaviour. This project will combine genetic, physiological and pharmaceutical techniques to identify these neurological pathways and potential strategies to block them.
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