Vanessa White

Research AssistantWhiteV
Bio21
Room 264
+613 9035 5939
vlwhite@unimelb.edu.au

Biography:

I first met Ary Hoffmann when I was an undergraduate at La Trobe University. Honours and a Research Assistant role with Museum Victoria (focused mainly on Australian birds) years passed before I reconnected with Ary and accepted a shared Laboratory Manager and research position with PEARG. I implemented many EHS and lab training and maintenance systems and genotyped the grape pest phylloxera and its host Vitis vinifera. In 2007 I went on maternity leave and had my daughter Misha but soon returned to the group in a part-time and research only capacity. My focus then became mosquitoes (mostly Aedes aegypti but also Aedes albopictus and Aedes notoscriptus) and I contributed to population genetic, taxonomic and phylogenetic studies (mostly using microsatellite markers and both the archaic radioisotope –imagine and fluorescent typing systems).

For the past 5 or so years my research has focused on mosquito control to reduce the transmission of pathogens such as dengue virus with the bacterium Wolbachia. My colleagues and I implemented light-cycler assays to screen for different Wolbachia infections and insecticide resistance mutations that are deemed important for Wolbachia releases. Recently, I have been learning RadSeq library construction and analysis and I am involved in a comparison of RadSeq and SNP chip technologies for Aedes aegypti. I also developed a single light-cycler assay that can detect “low-level” Wolbachia infections in Drosophila and Aedes species.

Highlights:

  • First authorship on a research publication (2014).
  • Writing Standard Operating Procedures for some of our light cycler assays that screen for Wolbachia infection and insecticide resistance mutations and training international colleagues in these.
  • 10 years with PEARG and recently celebrating this achievement with long service leave and a trip to Cuba with my family.

 

Publications:

Hancock, P. A., White, V. L., Callahan, A. G., Godfray, C. H. J., Hoffmann, A. A. and Ritchie, S. A. (2016) Density-dependent population dynamics in Aedes aegypti slow the spread of wMel Wolbachia. Journal of Applied Ecology, doi: 10.1111/1365-2664.12620

Wuliandari, J. R., Lee, S. F., White, V. L., Tantowijoyo, W., Hoffmann, A. A. and Endersby-Harshman, N. M. (2015) Association between Three Mutations, F1565C, V1023G and S996P, in the Voltage-Sensitive Sodium Channel Gene and Knockdown Resistance in Aedes aegypti from Yogyakarta, Indonesia. Insects, 6, 658-685.

White, V. L., Endersby, N. M., Chan, J., Hoffmann, A. A and Weeks, A. R. (2014) Developing Exon-primed intron-crossing (EPIC) markers for population genetic studies in three Aedes disease vectors. Insect Science  00, 1–15, DOI 10.1111/1744-7917.12145

Rakimov, A., Ben-Dov, Y., White, V. and Hoffmann, A. A. (2013) Soft scale insects (Hemiptera: Coccoidea: Coccidae) on grapevines in Australia. Australian Journal of Entomology, 52, 371-378.

Endersby, N. M., White, V. L., Chan, J., Hurst, T., Rašić, G., Miller, A. and Hoffmann, A. A. (2013) Evidence of cryptic genetic lineages within Aedes notoscriptus (Skuse). Infection, Genetics and Evolution, 18, 191-201.

Lee, S. F., White, V. L., Weeks, A. R., Hoffmann, A. A. and Endersby, N. M. (2012) High-throughput PCR assays to monitor Wolbachia infection in the dengue mosquito (Aedes aegypti) and Drosophila simulans. Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 78(13), 4740-4743.

Endersby, N. M., Hoffmann, A. A., White, V. L., Ritchie, S. A., Johnson, P. H. and Weeks, A. R. (2011) Changes in the genetic structure of Aedes aegypti (Diptera: Culicidae) populations in Queensland, Australia, across two seasons: Implications for potential mosquito releases. Journal of Medical Entomology, 48, 999-1007.

Endersby, N. M., Hoffmann, A. A., White, V. L., Lowenstein, S., Ritchie, S., Johnson, P. H., Rapley, L. P., Ryan, P. A., Nam, V. S., Yen, N. T., Kittiyapong, P. and Weeks, A. R. (2009) Genetic structure of Aedes aegypti in Australia and Vietnam revealed by microsatellite and Exon-Primed Intron-Crossing markers suggests feasibility of local control options. Journal of Medical Entomology, 46, 1074-1083.

Umina, P. A., Corrie, A. M., Herbert, K. S., White, V. L., Powell, K. S. and Hoffmann, A. A. (2007) The use of DNA markers for pest management –clonal lineages and population biology of grape phylloxera. Acta. Hortic.,733, 183-189.

 

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