Imperial College London

Professor George K. Christophides

Faculty of Natural SciencesDepartment of Life Sciences

Professor of Infectious Diseases & Immunity



+44 (0)20 7594 5342g.christophides




6167Sir Alexander Fleming BuildingSouth Kensington Campus






BibTex format

author = {Erguler, K and Smith-Unna, SE and Waldock, J and Proestos, Y and Christophides, GK and Lelieveld, J and Parham, PE},
doi = {10.1371/journal.pone.0149282},
journal = {PLOS One},
title = {Large-Scale Modelling of the Environmentally-Driven Population Dynamics of Temperate Aedes albopictus (Skuse)},
url = {},
volume = {11},
year = {2016}

RIS format (EndNote, RefMan)

AB - The Asian tiger mosquito, Aedes albopictus, is a highly invasive vector species. It is a proven vector of dengue and chikungunya viruses, with the potential to host a further 24 arboviruses. It has recently expanded its geographical range, threatening many countries in the Middle East, Mediterranean, Europe and North America. Here, we investigate the theoretical limitations of its range expansion by developing an environmentally-driven mathematical model of its population dynamics. We focus on the temperate strain of Ae. albopictus and compile a comprehensive literature-based database of physiological parameters. As a novel approach, we link its population dynamics to globally-available environmental datasets by performing inference on all parameters. We adopt a Bayesian approach using experimental data as prior knowledge and the surveillance dataset of Emilia-Romagna, Italy, as evidence. The model accounts for temperature, precipitation, human population density and photoperiod as the main environmental drivers, and, in addition, incorporates the mechanism of diapause and a simple breeding site model. The model demonstrates high predictive skill over the reference region and beyond, confirming most of the current reports of vector presence in Europe. One of the main hypotheses derived from the model is the survival of Ae. albopictus populations through harsh winter conditions. The model, constrained by the environmental datasets, requires that either diapausing eggs or adult vectors have increased cold resistance. The model also suggests that temperature and photoperiod control diapause initiation and termination differentially. We demonstrate that it is possible to account for unobserved properties and constraints, such as differences between laboratory and field conditions, to derive reliable inferences on the environmental dependence of Ae. albopictus populations.
AU - Erguler,K
AU - Smith-Unna,SE
AU - Waldock,J
AU - Proestos,Y
AU - Christophides,GK
AU - Lelieveld,J
AU - Parham,PE
DO - 10.1371/journal.pone.0149282
PY - 2016///
SN - 1932-6203
TI - Large-Scale Modelling of the Environmentally-Driven Population Dynamics of Temperate Aedes albopictus (Skuse)
T2 - PLOS One
UR -
UR -
VL - 11
ER -