Scroll to Section:

Unlike other human infectious diseases (e.g. tuberculosis, HIV), malaria is transmitted between humans via mosquitoes. In this video, ELENA LEVASHINA analyzes the mechanisms of how mosquitoes transmit malaria. Combining population studies conducted in the field with mathematical approaches, Levashina finds that mosquitoes with particular genetic characteristics transmit malaria more effectively than others. Though further research is needed on mosquito populations and their movements, the research suggests that interventions aimed at eradicating malaria might more profitably target particular kinds of mosquitoes rather than their populations more generally.


Elena Levashinais Group Leader of Vector Biology at the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology. She has previously held the positions of Research Director and Research Assistant at CNRS in Strasbourg. With interests in cellular and molecular biology, Levashina’s research helps us to understand the mechanisms of mosquito malaria transmission. Elected a member of the European Molecular Biology Organisation in 2010, Levashina was awarded the Prix Jaffé of the French Academy of Sciences in 2011


Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology

The Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology focuses on understanding how microbes cause disease and how hosts respond to this challenge. Its mission is to understand infections by viruses, bacteria, parasites, fungi and worms of two reasons: they present one of the most significant medical burdens on earth and the interaction between microbes and their host are an essential driver of evolution. To find answers to the fundamental questions of infection biology, the MPIIB brings together scientists from various disciplines. Hence the scale of the MPIIB research spans through the atomic, molecular, cellular, tissular, organismal, clinical and finally social level. The Institute is located at the historical Campus of the Charité Clinic in the heart of Berlin.

Show more

Original publication

Mosquito Microevolution Drives Plasmodium Falciparum Dynamics

Gildenhard Markus, Rono Evans K., Diarra Assetou, Boissière Anne, Bascunan Priscila, Carrillo-Bustamante Paola, Camara Djeneba, Krüger Hanne, Mariko Modibo, Mariko Ramata, Mireji Paul, NsangoSandrine E., Pompon Julien et al
Nature microbiology
Published in 2019

Reading recommendations

Speciation in Anopheles Gambiae —The Distribution of Genetic Polymorphism and Patterns of Reproductive Isolation Among Natural Populations

Lanzaro Gregory C. and Lee Yoosook
Anopheles mosquitoes-New insights into malaria vectors
Published in 2013

Is the Current Decline in Malaria Burden in Sub-Saharan Africa Due to a Decrease in Vector Population?

Meyrowitsch Dan W., Pedersen Erling M., Alifrangis Michael, Scheike Thomas H., Malecela Mwelecele N., Magesa Stephen M., Derua Yahya A., Rwegoshora Rwehumbiza T., Michael Edwin and Simonsen Paul E.
Malaria journal
Published in 2011