Revista de Biología Tropical
Print version ISSN 0034-7744
SCHAPER, Stefan and HERNANDEZ-CHAVARRIA, Francisco. Scanning electron microscopy of the four larval instars of the Dengue fever vector Aedes aegypti (Diptera: Culicidae). Rev. biol. trop [online]. 2006, vol.54, n.3, pp. 847-852. ISSN 0034-7744.
Aedes aegypti is the main insect vector of Dengue fever and dengue hemorrhagic fever/dengue shock syndrome and represents the only vulnerable element in the control of this disease. Therefore, the identification and quantification of this mosquito is an important task; however, the majority of taxonomic keys are based on the 4th larval instar. For that reason, this study describes the four larval instars of A. aegypti using scanning electron microscopy. Morphological changes during larval development were observed at the pecten, comb scales and the ventral brush of the abdominal segment X; however, the 3rd and 4th instars showed similar structures with only a slight variation. The structures described in this study will be helpful in the identification of the four instars of A. aegypti, a fundamental task for comprehending the natural history of dengue mainly in new territories affected. Rev. Biol. Trop. 54 (3): 847-852. Epub 2006 Sept. 29.
Keywords : Aedes aegypti; larval development; morphology; scanning electron microscopy.