The Anopheles gambiae Adult Midgut Peritrophic Matrix Proteome
Malaria is a devastating disease. For transmission to occur, Plasmodium, the causative agent of malaria, must complete a complex developmental cycle in its mosquito vector. Thus, the mosquito is a potential target for disease control. Plasmodium ookinetes, which develop within the mosquito midgut, must first cross the midgut's peritrophic matrix (PM), a thick extracellular sheath that completely surrounds the blood meal. The PM poses a partial, natural barrier against parasite invasion of the midgut and it is speculated that modifications to the PM may lead to a complete barrier to infection. However, such strategies require a thorough characterization of the structure of the PM. Here, we describe for the first time, the complete PM proteome of the main malaria vector, Anopheles gambiae. Altogether, 209 proteins were identified by mass spectrometry. Among them were nine new chitin-binding peritrophic matrix proteins, expanding the list from three to twelve peritrophins. Lastly, we provide a model for the putative interactions among the proteins identified in this study.