Dina M. Fonseca


Email: dinafons@rci.rutgers.edu


I am a molecular ecologist examining how populations of invasive mosquitoes primarily dispersed by humans differ in vectorial capacity over space and time, profoundly affecting epidemiological landscapes and risk estimates. I have a strong extension program where I work closely with professional mosquito control programs using my understanding of mosquito biology, ecology and evolution to develop effective and efficient strategies for control. I have also spearheaded urban mosquito control by residents through Citizen Action Through Science (Citizen AcTS) and am a founding member of InSITE (Innovative Strategies for Invasives) using environmental DNA (eDNA) and risk analysis to detect and contain invasive species.

Summary of education and employment

B.S. in Biology and Geology from the University of Coimbra, Portugal, Ph.D. in Ecology and Evolution from the University of Pennsylvania, USA. Smithsonian Fellow at the National Zoo Institute for Conservation and Biodiversity. Then NRC Associate at Walter Reed Army Institute of Research. Geneticist at the Smithsonian Institution, where she is still a Research Associate, then Assistant Curator at the Academy of Natural Sciences, joined Rutgers University in 2007 as an Associate Professor. Became tenured in 2010 and Full Professor in 2014. Teaches courses in Medical and Veterinary Entomology and Molecular Methods in Entomology, Ecology and Epidemiology. Became the Interim Director of the Center for Vector Biology (CVB) in October 2016 and the CVB Director in July 2017.


Non-refereed Publications

5.   Occi J, Egizi A, Fonseca DM. 2017. Lone star ticks in New Jersey: risk, ecology and preventionRutgers Cooperative Extension Fact Sheet No. XXX. New Brunswick, New Jersey 4 pp.
4.   Occi J, Fonseca DM. 2016. “Ticks and Gardening”. Gardener News. August issue, Larry Katz Rutgers NJAES column.
3.   Fonseca DM. 2016. “Strengthening a Zika weak link: what gardeners should know”. Gardener News. July issue, Larry Katz Rutgers NJAES column.
2.   Helen Spafford (chair), Robert Venette, Dina Fonseca, Ariel Rivers, Alejandro Calixto. 2016. The Not so-hidden dangers of invasive species. ESA Position Statement on Invasive Species. Approved April 21, 2016 valid through April 21, 2020: http://www.entsoc.org/PDF/2016/EntSocAmerica_ PolicyStatement_InvasiveSpecies.pdf
1.   Rector P, Duckworth TN, and Fonseca DM. 2014. Rain Barrels and Mosquitoes. Rutgers Cooperative Extension Fact Sheet No. 1240. New Brunswick, New Jersey 4 pp. https://njaes.rutgers.edu/pubs/fs1240/ (Association of Natural Resource Extension Professionals 2015 Short Publication Silver Award)

White papers and Symposium papers
2. Fonseca DM 2016 Approaches to infer vectorial capacity: from rapid assays to population genomics and transcriptomics. A paper in a Symposium on“Arthropod-borne infectious diseases and arthropods as disease agents in human and animal health” 1-3 October 2016, Berlin, Germany. Accepted for publication in Nova Acta Leopoldina a publication of the German Academy of Science Leopoldina.
1. Fonseca DM 2016 Steps for effective mosquito control in response to a potential Zika virus outbreak. Submitted to the Joint Subcommittee Meeting on Foreign Affairs entitled “The Global Zika Epidemic: Emerging in the Americas” (Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations Christopher H. Smith (R-NJ), Chairman & Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere Jeff Duncan (R-SC), Chairman), February 10, 2016.
Refereed Publications (last 2 years)
Published (*graduate student; ** postdoc in my lab; *** technician or undergraduate)
93. Valentin R, Nielsen A., Wiman NG, Lee D-H, Fonseca DM 2017 Global invasion network of the brown marmorated stink bug, Halyomorpha halys Stål. Nature Scientific Reports (accepted)
92. Stone CM, Schwab SR, Fonseca DM, Fefferman NH 2017 Human movement, cooperation, and the effectiveness of coordinated vector control strategies Journal of the Royal Society Interface (accepted)
91. Corbel V, Fonseca DM, Weetman D, Pinto J, Achee NL, Chandre F, Coulibaly MB, Dusfour I, Grieco J, Juntarajumnong W, Lenhart A, Martins AJ, Moyes C, Ng LC, Raghavendra K, Vatandoost H, Vontas J, Muller P, Kasai S, Fouque F, Velayudhan R, Durot C, David J-C 2017 International workshop on insecticide resistance in vectors of arboviruses, December 2016, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Parasites & Vectors https://parasitesandvectors.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13071-017-2224-3
90. Maslo B, Valentin R*, Leu K, Kerwin K, Bevan A, Hamilton GC, Fefferman NH, Fonseca DM 2017 ChiroSurveillance: The Use of Native Bats to Detect Invasive Agricultural Pests. PLoS One http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0173321
89. Vuong HB*, Chiu GS, Smouse PE, Fonseca DM, Brisson D, Morin, PJ, Ostfeld RS 2017 Influences of host community characteristics of Borrelia burgdorferi infection prevalence in blacklegged ticks. PLoS One http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0167810
88. Johnson BJ, Ritchie S, Fonseca DM 2017 The state of the art of lethal oviposition trap-based mass interventions for arboviral control Insects 8, 5; doi:10.3390/insects80100052016
87. Corbel V, Achee N, Chandre F, Coulibaly MB, Dusfour I, Fonseca DM, Grieco J, Juntarajumnong W, Martins Jr AJ, Moyes C, Ng LC, Pinto J, Raghavendra K, Vatandoost H, Vontas J, Weetman D, David J-P 2016 Tracking insecticide resistance in mosquito vectors of arboviruses worldwide: the Worldwide Insecticide resistance Network (WIN). PLoS NTD 10(12):e0005054. doi: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0005054
86. Chaulk AC, Carson PK, Whitney HG, Fonseca DM, Chapman TW 2016 The arrival of the northern house mosquito Culex pipiens (Diptera: Culicidae) on Newfoundland’s Avalon Peninsula. Journal of Medical Entomology in press
85. Egizi A, Kiser J, Abadam C, Fonseca DM 2016 The hitchhiker’s guide to becoming invasive: exotic mosquitoes spread across a U.S. state by human transport not autonomous flight. Molecular Ecology online early
84. Faraji A, Unlu I, Crepeau T, Healy S, Crans S, Lizarraga L,  Fonseca DM, Gaugler R 2016 Droplet characterization and penetration of an ultra-low volume mosquito adulticide spray targeting the Asian tiger mosquito, Aedes albopictus, within urban and suburban environments of northeastern USA. PLoS One http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0152069
83. Rivera MJ*, Rodriguez-Saona C, Egizi A, Fonseca DM, Jennings DE, Koppenhöfer AM 2016 Cultivation and domestication of highbush blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum) alters abundance, diversity, and virulence of entomopathogenic nematodes. Agriculture, Ecosystems, and Environment 222: 148-155.
82. Valentin R*, Maslo B, Lockwood J, Pote J*, Fonseca DM 2016 Real-time PCR assay to detect brown marmorated stink bug, Halyomorpha halys (Stål), in environmental DNA (eDNA). Pest Management Science online early
81.   Thompson J, Fonseca DM, Finelli C, Bakhtier F, Hart DD 2016 Scale dependent relationships between suspension-feeding stream insects and water velocity in spatially heterogeneous environments. Freshwater Biology DOI: 10.1111/fwb.12688
80. Johnson BJ*, Fonseca DM 2016 Insecticide resistance alleles in wetland and residential populations of the West Nile virus vector Culex pipiens in New Jersey, USA. Pest Management Science Mar 25. DOI: 10.1002/ps.4011.
79. Price DC*, Egizi AM, Fonseca DM 2015 Doublesex is ubiquitous and ancestral in insects Scientific Reports 5(13068). DOI: 10.1038/srep13068.
78.   Wilkerson RC, Linton Y-M, Fonseca DM, Schultz TR, Price* DC, Strickman DA 2015 Making mosquito taxonomy useful: a stable classification of tribe Aedini that balances utility with current knowledge of evolutionary relationships. PLoS One 10(7): e0133602. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0133602
77. Price DC*, Egizi AM, Fonseca DM 2015 Characterization of the doublesex gene within the Culex pipiens complex underscores plasticity at the base of the mosquito sex determination cascade BMC: Evolutionary Biology 15:108 DOI: 10.1186/s12862-015-0386-1          
76.   Fonseca DM, Kaplan LR*, Heiry RA***, Strickman D 2015 Density dependent oviposition by female Aedes albopictus (Diptera: Culicidae) spreads eggs among containers during the summer but accumulates them in the fall. Journal of Medical Entomology 52(4):705-12.
Price DC* and Fonseca DM 2015 Genetic divergence between populations of feral and domestic forms of a mosquito disease vector assessed by transcriptomics. PeerJ 3:e807 https://dx.doi.org/10.7717/peerj.807
74.   Fingerut JT, Fonseca DM, Thompson JR, Hart DD 2015 Seeking shelter from the storm: Responses of benthic stream invertebrates to natural and experimental floods. Freshwater Science 34(3): 897-908.
73.   Egizi A, Fefferman NH, Fonseca DM 2015 Evidence that implicit assumptions of “no evolution” of disease vectors in changing environments can be violated on a rapid timescale. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society Series B 370(1665) DOI: 10.1098/rstb.2014.0136.
72.   Johnson BJ*, Robson MG, Fonseca DM 2015 Unexpected spatiotemporal abundance of infected Cx. restuans suggest a greater role as a West Nile virus vector for this native species. Infection, Genetics and Evolution 31: 40-47.
71.   Egizi A*, Fonseca DM. 2015. Ecological limits can obscure expansion history: patterns of genetic diversity in a temperate mosquito in Hawaii. Biological Invasions 17(1): 123-132.