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Arthropod-borne diseases cause significant morbidity and mortality worldwide. Mosquitoes alone may account for as many as three million deaths annually via the transmission of malaria. Because these diseases are transmitted to humans and to other vertebrates as a result of the ability of arthropods to feed on blood, the study of the biochemical mechanisms and adaptations that arthropods have evolved to facilitate hematophagy may provide insight into how this feeding behavior contributes to the transmission of disease. In this review, Kenneth Stark and Anthony James examine the diversity of arthropod anticoagulants and their role in hematophagy and potential implications for parasite transmission.

Original publication




Journal article


Parasitol Today

Publication Date





430 - 437