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Vectorborne diseases
Expansion of the range of the West Nile virus vector in Essex
  1. Benjamin Cull1,
  2. Alexander G. C. Vaux1,
  3. Jolyon M. Medlock1,
  4. Anthony Abbott2 and
  5. Gabriella Gibson2
  1. 1Medical Entomology & Zoonoses Ecology, Emergency Response Department, Public Health England, Porton Down, Salisbury SP4 0JG
  2. 2Natural Resources Institute, University of Greenwich, Chatham Maritime, Kent ME4 4TB, e-mail: jolyon.medlock@phe.gov.uk

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THE mosquito Culex modestus is an important vector of West Nile virus (WNV) in continental Europe and, due to its preference for feeding on both avian and mammalian hosts, is considered to be a principal bridge vector of WNV (Medlock and others 2005, Balenghien and others 2008).

Before 2010, C modestus was considered absent from the mosquito fauna in the UK, as the only record and subsequent eradication was from Portsmouth in the mid-1940s (Marshall 1945); as a result WNV risk assessments were based on the assumption that this key bridge vector was absent. However, in 2010, large populations of C …

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