Culex (Culex) pipiens quinquefasciatus Say field population from Vero Beach, FL, sampled monthly over a period of 8 mo, a colony sample, and six geographic samples were analyzed for genetic variation at 12 enzymes (10 “neutral” gene enzymes with 11 putative loci and two “complex” gene enzymes) by using polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. The analysis of the 11 putative loci in both temporal and geographic samples showed that the four loci (Gpi, Hk, Mdhp-2, and Pgm) diagnostic of Cx. p. quinquefasciatus in the southern United States are present in similar frequencies in Florida samples. The Cx. p. quinquefasciatus colony sample showed significantly lower genetic variation than the temporal field samples, measured by mean number of alleles per locus (colony 1.2 ± 0.1 versus field 1.44 ± 0.03), percentage of polymorphic loci (colony 18.2% versus field 28.4%), mean observed heterozygosity (Ho = colony 0.027 ± 0.02 versus field 0.09 ± 0.01), and mean Hardy-Weinberg expected heterozygosity (He = colony 0.025 ± 0.02 versus field 0.085 ± 0.01). Three of the 11 loci (Acoh, Pgd, and Pgm) from the Vero Beach field samples showed bimodal patterns in their frequencies of the most common allele during peak density of the population. The low value of Fst of 0.058 indicated minimum population substructuring among the temporal samples. Genetic variability values between geographic samples from the Florida panhandle and south Florida were not significant. Gene flow estimates based on FST = 0.05, indicating low levels of gene flow among the geographic samples of Cx. p. quinquefasciatus. The average Nei’s and modified Rogers’ genetic distances among the six populations were 0.005 ± 0.001 and 0.077 ± 0.007, respectively. The cluster analysis did not suggest geographic clustering. The analysis of the “complex” gene enzymes in both temporal and geographic samples of Cx. p. quinquefasciatus from Florida showed the presence of two highly amplified esterases (Estβ1 and Estα2\Estβ2), indicating resistance to organophosphate insecticides and highly amplified Aldox enzyme (an enzyme that indicates resistance to at least one insecticide and a herbicide). Comparison of our results with previous studies on Cx. p. quinquefasciatus populations in the United States indicates that the genetic characteristics of the Florida populations of Cx. p. quinquefasciatus are very similar to populations from areas where ecological conditions are very different.
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Vol. 40 • No. 6