Wolbachia are maternally inherited bacteria that infect a wide range of arthropods as well as filarial worms. The infection usually results in reproductive distortions of the host, primarily cytoplasmic incompatibility, parthenogenesis, and feminization. This study showed that Wolbachia infection (15/29; 51.72%) was prevalent among field-caught mosquitoes in Taiwan. Three mosquito species were identified as having Wolbachia A infection, eight species as having Wolbachia B, and four other species were dually infected by both groups. Each Wolbachia isolate from different mosquitoes was further divided into a specific subgroup. However, there were still some isolates that did not belong to any known subgroup, suggesting that more subgroups remain to be identified. Investigation of tissue tropism in either Aedes albopictus (Skuse) or Armigeres subalbatus (Coquillett) revealed that Wolbachia were extensively distributed within the host, although the ovary was most susceptible to infection. This report provides preliminary features of molecular relationships among Wolbachia groups of mosquitoes from Taiwan.
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Vol. 41 • No. 4