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1.  Control of the olive fruit fly using genetics-enhanced sterile insect technique 
BMC Biology  2012;10:51.
Background
The olive fruit fly, Bactrocera oleae, is the major arthropod pest of commercial olive production, causing extensive damage to olive crops worldwide. Current control techniques rely on spraying of chemical insecticides. The sterile insect technique (SIT) presents an alternative, environmentally friendly and species-specific method of population control. Although SIT has been very successful against other tephritid pests, previous SIT trials on olive fly have produced disappointing results. Key problems included altered diurnal mating rhythms of the laboratory-reared insects, resulting in asynchronous mating activity between the wild and released sterile populations, and low competitiveness of the radiation-sterilised mass-reared flies. Consequently, the production of competitive, male-only release cohorts is considered an essential prerequisite for successful olive fly SIT.
Results
We developed a set of conditional female-lethal strains of olive fly (named Release of Insects carrying a Dominant Lethal; RIDL®), providing highly penetrant female-specific lethality, dominant fluorescent marking, and genetic sterility. We found that males of the lead strain, OX3097D-Bol, 1) are strongly sexually competitive with wild olive flies, 2) display synchronous mating activity with wild females, and 3) induce appropriate refractoriness to wild female re-mating. Furthermore, we showed, through a large proof-of-principle experiment, that weekly releases of OX3097D-Bol males into stable populations of caged wild-type olive fly could cause rapid population collapse and eventual eradication.
Conclusions
The observed mating characteristics strongly suggest that an approach based on the release of OX3097D-Bol males will overcome the key difficulties encountered in previous olive fly SIT attempts. Although field confirmation is required, the proof-of-principle suppression and elimination of caged wild-type olive fly populations through OX3097D-Bol male releases provides evidence for the female-specific RIDL approach as a viable method of olive fly control. We conclude that the promising characteristics of OX3097D-Bol may finally enable effective SIT-based control of the olive fly.
doi:10.1186/1741-7007-10-51
PMCID: PMC3398856  PMID: 22713628
olive fly; Bactrocera oleae; sterile insect technique; SIT; release of insects carrying a dominant lethal; RIDL; autocidal control; insect transgenics
2.  Transcriptomics and disease vector control 
BMC Biology  2010;8:52.
Next-generation sequencing can be used to compare transcriptomes under different conditions. A study in BMC Genomics applies this approach to investigating the effects of exposure to a range of xenobiotics on changes in gene expression in the larvae of Aedes aegypti, the mosquito vector of dengue fever.
See research article http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2164/11/216
doi:10.1186/1741-7007-8-52
PMCID: PMC2867780  PMID: 20525113
3.  Late-acting dominant lethal genetic systems and mosquito control 
BMC Biology  2007;5:11.
Background
Reduction or elimination of vector populations will tend to reduce or eliminate transmission of vector-borne diseases. One potential method for environmentally-friendly, species-specific population control is the Sterile Insect Technique (SIT). SIT has not been widely used against insect disease vectors such as mosquitoes, in part because of various practical difficulties in rearing, sterilization and distribution. Additionally, vector populations with strong density-dependent effects will tend to be resistant to SIT-based control as the population-reducing effect of induced sterility will tend to be offset by reduced density-dependent mortality.
Results
We investigated by mathematical modeling the effect of manipulating the stage of development at which death occurs (lethal phase) in an SIT program against a density-dependence-limited insect population. We found late-acting lethality to be considerably more effective than early-acting lethality. No such strains of a vector insect have been described, so as a proof-of-principle we constructed a strain of the principal vector of the dengue and yellow fever viruses, Aedes (Stegomyia) aegypti, with the necessary properties of dominant, repressible, highly penetrant, late-acting lethality.
Conclusion
Conventional SIT induces early-acting (embryonic) lethality, but genetic methods potentially allow the lethal phase to be tailored to the program. For insects with strong density-dependence, we show that lethality after the density-dependent phase would be a considerable improvement over conventional methods. For density-dependent parameters estimated from field data for Aedes aegypti, the critical release ratio for population elimination is modeled to be 27% to 540% greater for early-acting rather than late-acting lethality. Our success in developing a mosquito strain with the key features that the modeling indicated were desirable demonstrates the feasibility of this approach for improved SIT for disease control.
doi:10.1186/1741-7007-5-11
PMCID: PMC1865532  PMID: 17374148

Results 1-3 (3)