Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Global potential distribution of three underappreciated arboviruses vectors (Aedes japonicus, Aedes vexans and Aedes vittatus) under current and future climate conditions.

Abstract

Arboviruses (arthropod-borne viruses) are expanding their geographic range, posing significant health threats to millions of people worldwide. This expansion is associated with efficient and suitable vector availability. Apart from the well-known Aedes aegypti and Ae. albopictus, other Aedes species may potentially promote the geographic spread of arboviruses because these viruses have similar vector requirements. Aedes japonicus, Ae. vexans and Ae. vittatus are a growing concern, given their potential and known vector competence for several arboviruses including dengue, chikungunya, and Zika viruses. In the present study, we developed detailed maps of their global potential distributions under both current and future (2050) climate conditions, using an ecological niche modeling approach (Maxent). Under present-day conditions, Ae. japonicus and Ae. vexans have suitable areas in the northeastern United States, across Europe and in southeastern China, whereas the tropical regions of South America, Africa and Asia are more suitable for Ae. vittatus. Future scenarios anticipated range changes for the three species, with each expected to expand into new areas that are currently not suitable. By 2050, Ae. japonicus will have a broader potential distribution across much of Europe, the United States, western Russia and central Asia. Aedes vexans may be able to expand its range, especially in Libya, Egypt and southern Australia. For Ae. vittatus, future projections indicated areas at risk in sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East. As such, these species deserve as much attention as Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus when processing arboviruses risk assessments and our findings may help to better understand the potential distribution of each species.