Parasitism relationship between mosquito and human

Parasitism - Symbiosis Website- Miranda S

parasitism relationship between mosquito and human

Parasitism is a symbiotic relationship in which one organism benefits (the host, and, among parasitic plant species, the strangler fig of the topical rainforest It is important to note that the protist is a parasite to both the mosquito and humans. Malaria parasites are transmitted to human hosts by female mosquitoes of the genus the parasite-vector relationship and determine why some mosquito species The interaction between the Plasmodium parasite and host immune system. The full story is more complex - and it's highlighted by a peculiar, distinctive relationship between humans and mosquitoes that has endured.

At this point the protist is called a sporozoite. Click for large image. Plasmodium sporozoites Sporozoites travel through the host's blood stream, eventually reaching the liver, where the sporozoites enter liver cells and begin to reproduce asexually, forming a mass of merozoite cells called a schizont.

This process can take days to months depending on the species of Plasmodium involved. The merozoites are then released into the human host's blood stream where they infect red blood cells. Schizont in human liver cell A Plasmodium merozoite Upon infection of a red blood cell, the merozoites reproduce asexually until the red blood cell is full of merozoites.

The cell ruptures and the merozoites are released to infect more red blood cells. At certain times, some of the merozoites actually go through meiosis to produce male and female haploid gametocytes. These gametocytes can not unite within the human host the environment is not right. In order for fertilization to take place, the gametocytes must first be taken into the digestive tract of the correct species of Anopheles mosquito. In this way, we could think of humans as giving a parasite to the mosquito!

The conditions within the mosquito digestive tract turns out to be just right for Plasmodium gametocyte fusion fertilization. Upon fertilization, the zygote Ookinete moves through the intestinal epithelium and into the hemocoel body cavity of the mosquito, forming an oocyst.

The oocyst produces sporozoites, which are released at maturation and travel to the cells of the mosquito's salivary glands.

parasitism relationship between mosquito and human

From this point the process continues as it has for millions of years. There was a line of about 6 barracuda waiting to get cleaned here; the others were behind me in the line.

Finally, everyone who has seen "Finding Nemo" knows about the association between Clownfish and Anemones. By working its way carefully into the anemone, the clownfish gradually accustoms the anemone to the chemical makeup of the fish's skin; this gradual acclimatization prevents the anemone from stinging the clownfish while fish with a different "taste" will be stung and eaten.

  • Malaria Parasite, Mosquito, and Human Host

The fish gets a safe house and some tidbits; the anemone gets cleaned and has the clownfish working as lures to bring in potential prey, or chasing away fish that would harm the anemone. Some scientists do not see any benefit for the anemone and classify this as a commensalism. The Sea Lamprey, above left, is a sort of temporary parasite. It latches onto a fish and uses the teeth to hold on and rasp away the skin, leaving an open wound for the lamprey to feed on.

It drops off, usually without killing the "host". Sea Lampreys are not specific on any species of fish; they will latch onto any living thing and try to feed.

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The wasp above has stung and paralyzed a spider. It will take the spider to a nest and lay an egg on it. The larvae will consume the still-living spider; often from the inside. This is usually considered to be a parasitoid relationship. Two more mutualistic relationships from the Costa Rican forests. These algae help to camouflage the sloth against the lichen-covered tree note the brown fur of the baby, not yet covered with algae.

There is even a moth that lives only in the sloth's fur and consumes the algae; this is a commensal relationship between the moth and the sloth. Below, a mutualistic relationship. The Acacia Tree is partially protected by large thorns, but it gets extra protection from Acacia Ants.

Why Mosquitoes Are So Obsessed with Humans -- and Why It Matters

The plant does 3 things to lure in the ants. First, the large thorns are hollow and provide a place for the ants to live. Second, the plants have swollen glands, nectaries, which produce a sugary solution the ants drink. The nectaries are obvious in the photo below. In return for the room and board the ants chase off herbivores, kill and eat herbivorous insects, and destroy and plants that try to compete with the acacia.

The horsehair worm starts life as an egg laid in a puddle. The puddle dries out and a grasshopper or similar insect comes along and eats the egg, which promptly hatches and burrows through the gut of the insect into its body cavity or hemolymph.

parasitism relationship between mosquito and human

Here, surrounded by the nutritious blood of the insect it grows until it reaches adulthood. At that point it starts producing chemicals which take over the brain of the insect and cause the insect to seek out water, which it jumps into. The worm then exits the hopper and lives in the puddle, mating and laying more eggs. The grasshopper, if it doesn't drown, may survive the ordeal.

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Below, a social parasite. This cricket lives in an ant nest. It disguises itself with a chemical signature that fools the ants into thinking it is just another ant. It is free to roam the nest and it even gets the ants to feed it. The Brown-Headed Cowbirds above are nest parasites. They originally followed the bison on the Great Plains, feeding on insects kicked up by the large herds.


Since the bison themselves migrated, following the melting snows and eating the fresh spring grass, the cowbirds had to move as well. This presented a problem, as it's hard to incubate eggs on the move. Lay the eggs in other birds' nests, and trick the other birds into raising your young. The cowbirds hatch out first, push the other eggs out of the nest, and the nest-builders often much smaller than the rapidly growing cowbird end up feeding it instead of their own young.

Even though the other birds may pattern their eggs the cowbirds are up to the challenge. Cowbirds hesitate entering forests, but roads, farms, powerlines and other human intrusions give them a pathway deep into the woods where they are free to parasitize the nests of birds which until the arrival of humans didn't have to worry about the cowbirds.

Some of these bird species are on the verge of extinction as a result. Bromeliads left, above left avoid the hassle of crating a trunk to lift their leaves above the forest floor and closer to the sun.

They simply grow on the branches of trees. Since the bromeliads don't take any nutrients from the trees this is usually classified as a commensalism, but if there are a lot of bromeliads left the tree will need to add extra wood to support the weight a bromeliad can trap up to 10 gallons 80 pounds of water in its leaves. So, if there are a lot of bromeliads the relationship overall turns into a negative for the tree.

The bromeliads also host a number of organisms in the water they trap; the wastes from the animals living there undoubtedly fertilizes the bromeliad in a mutualistic relationship.

The tree at lower left is absolutely covered with epiphytes. Leeches below left are usually thought of as ectoparasites although some are predators. They attach to a vertebrate host and take a blood meal before dropping off.

Most aren't adapted to a single vertebrate host, but they are highly adapted to sucking blood; their saliva includes anesthetics to help keep the host from noticing the bite, as well as anticoagulants to keep the blood flowing. Below is a larval mussel freshwater clam.

parasitism relationship between mosquito and human

If there is any case of "good" parasitism, this may be it. The little mussels go into the mouth and pass over the gills. Here, they clamp down by closing the shell and digging in with the little teeth pictured at the edge of the shell. The fish provides a meal and transport upstream moving is not something mussels do well over long distances, particularly upstream.

Lichens above and left are mutualistic associations between a fungus and an algae or cyanobacteria. The most widespread of these diseases is malaria, but recent outbreaks of dengue fever and Zika virus-- now confirmed to cause brain defects in infants--have brought renewed attention to the mosquito as a carrier and transmitter of deadly pathogens.

Accounting for this spread of disease, mosquitoes are actually--by a wide margin--the world's deadliest animal, based on the number of human lives they take each year. One mosquito alone can infect up to people with a mosquito-borne disease. This colossal danger buzzes around us disguised as a tiny nuisance. So, why are mosquitoes so attracted to us? Why are humans their meal of choice? The short answer is they rely upon the nourishment provided by human blood to reproduce.

The full story is more complex - and it's highlighted by a peculiar, distinctive relationship between humans and mosquitoes that has endured over centuries and ignited pandemics the world over.

Once upon a time, thousands of years ago, mosquitoes fed on other non-human forest animals. Evolution led certain mosquitoes to develop a preference for feeding on humans; an attraction which research has demonstrated is largely based on human scent.

Driven by this chemical attraction, we slowly became not only a feeding option for mosquitoes, but also their meal of choice. Unfortunately for us, these same species carry dangerous human diseases. The numerous species and subspecies of mosquito is a crucial bit of context. The distinctions between species matter a great deal - various mosquito species carry different pathogens and are found in different regions of the world.

Several species, including many found throughout the United States, aren't known to carry any pathogens. Specifically, the Anopheles mosquito spreads malaria, while the Aedes mosquito carries dengue, yellow fever, chikungunya, and Zika virus. CDC These mosquito species are generally found in differing geographic regions. They have historically concentrated in the southern hemisphere and tropical regions, resulting in much larger burdens of diseases like malaria in places like sub-Saharan Africa and southeast Asia.

The Africa region accounted for 88 percent of malaria cases in Climate change, however, is shifting the range of mosquitoes --and the potential for spread of disease--further into northern regions. Aedes mosquitoes, for instance, are now found in southern U.