Alex Schwartz

Alex “Mbu” Schwartz 

former post-doctoral researcher of the lab (2005 – 2006)





Prior to my arrival at IBMC in Sept. 2005, I was interested in the melanization response of the mosquitoes Anopheles gambiae and Aedes aegypti. Jacob Koella, (presently in Imperial College) my PhD advisor, and I made several trips to Ifakara, Tanzania and Kisumu, Kenya to investigate the melanization responses of A. gambiae s.l. We investigated evolutionary questions pertaining to costs of immunity among field mosquitoes. One way of addressing such questions was to inject Sephadex beads into the mosquito thorax and score the amount of melanin found on the bead surface. This work was subsequently followed by a microarray study of bead-injected mosquitoes while doing a post-doc in the laboratory of Volker Loeschcke (Aarhus University). This work was part of a collaboration with George Dimpoulos (Johns Hopkins Univ.) As for my present research in the Levashina Lab, well… it does not involve bead injections!!!!!!! One of my reasons for joining the Levashina Lab is to become more proficient at using molecular biology techniques to investigate immune responses in A. gambiae. I hope to use this knowledge to work on a long-term future project investigating immune responses of naturally occuring Anophelines in either sub-Saharan Africa, or in some other exotic location such as Tahiti, Bora-Bora or New Jersey.


9. Malaria Plasmodium agent induces alteration in the head proteome of their Anopheles mosquito host. Lefevre T., Thomas F., Schwartz A., Levashina E.A., Blandin S., Brizard J-P., Le Bourligu L., Demettre E., Renaud F., Biron D.G. 2007 Proteomics 7(11):1908-15 pubmed

8. Dopamine levels in the mosquito Aedes aegypti during adult development, following blood feeding and in response to heat stress. Andersen J.P., Schwartz A., Gramsbergen J.B., Loeschcke V. 2006 J Insect Physiol. 52(11-12):1163-70 pubmed

7. The cost of immunity in the yellow fever mosquito, Aedes aegypti, depends on immune activation. Schwartz A., and Koella J.C. 2004 J. Evolutionary Biology 17(4):834-840 pubmed

6. Melanization of Plasmodium falciparum and C-25 Sephadex beads by field caught Anopheles gambiae (Diptera:Culicidae) from southern Tanzania. Schwartz A., and Koella J.C. 2002 Journal of Medical Entomology 39(1):84-88 pubmed

5. Trade-offs, conflicts of interest and manipulation in Plasmodium-mosquito interactions. Schwartz A., and Koella J.C. 2001 Trends in Parasitology 17(4):189-194 pubmed

4. Two-dimensional gel analysis of haemolymph proteins from Plasmodium-melanizing and –non-melanizing strains of Anopheles gambiae. Chun J., McMaster J., Han Y.-S., Schwartz A., and Paskewitz S.M. 2000 Insect Molecular Biology 9(1):39-45 pubmed

3. Induction of mosquito hemolymph proteins in response to immune challenge and wounding. Han Y.-S., Chun J., Schwartz A., Nielsen S., and Paskewitz S.M. 1999 Dev. Comp. Immunol. 23(7-8):553-562 pubmed

2. The role of surface characteristics in eliciting humoral encapsulation of foreign bodies in Plasmodium refractory and –susceptible strains of Anopheles gambiae. Paskewitz S.M., Schwartz A., Gorman M.J. 1998 J. Insect Physiology 44(10):947-954 pubmed

1. The lethal effects of Cyperus iria on Aedes aegypti. Schwartz A., Paskewitz S.M., Orth A.O., Tesch M.J., Toong Y.C., and Goodman W.G. 1998 J. American Mosquito Control Association 14(1):78-82 pubmed