The synergistic actions of the nongenetic and genetic factors are crucial to shape mosquitoes’ feeding behavior. Unlike males, adult female mosquitoes are evolved with unique ability to take blood meals from a vertebrate host for reproductive success which eventually makes them a potential vector. Processing and integration of chemical information in the neuro-olfactory system followed by salivary actions facilitate blood meal uptake process. Thus, deciphering the underlying molecular mechanism of odor sensing through the detection machinery (olfactory system), odor processing and decision-making by decision machinery (brain), and regulation of saliva secretion by the action machinery (salivary gland) is likely to reveal molecular pathways which can be targeted to disrupt mosquitoes’ feeding behavior. Here we summarize how smart actions of highly specialized neurosensory systems guide and manage feeding behavior associated complex events of (i) successful navigation to find a suitable host, (ii) making food choice decisions, and (iii) regulation of the salivary gland actions in mosquitoes.
Part of the book: Sino-Nasal and Olfactory System Disorders