Nataly A de Souza1, Reginaldo P Brazil2, Alejandra S Araki3,+
1Fundação Oswaldo Cruz-Fiocruz, Instituto Oswaldo Cruz, Laboratório Interdisciplinar de Vigilância Entomológica em Diptera e Hemiptera, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brasil
2Fundação Oswaldo Cruz-Fiocruz, Instituto Oswaldo Cruz, Laboratório de Doenças Parasitárias, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brasil
3Fundação Oswaldo Cruz-Fiocruz, Instituto Oswaldo Cruz, Laboratório de Biologia Molecular de Insetos, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brasil
Lutzomyia longipalpis s.l. is a complex of sibling species and is the principal vector of American visceral leishmaniasis. The present review summarises the diversity of efforts that have been undertaken to elucidate the number of unnamed species in this species complex and the phylogenetic relationships among them. A wide variety of evidence, including chemical, behavioral and molecular traits, suggests very recent speciation events and complex population structure in this group. Although significant advances have been achieved to date, differential vector capacity and the correlation between structure of parasite and vector populations have yet to be elucidated. Furthermore, increased knowledge about recent epidemiological changes, such as urbanisation, is essential for pursuing effective strategies for sandfly control in the New World.
Financial support: IOC/FIOCRUZ, CNPq, PNPD-Capes.
Received 19 October 2016
Accepted 13 January 2017