Scholarly Literature

This is a database of scholarly literature that concentrates currently on natural and engineered selfish genetic elements (gene drives).  The latest are shown here.
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Transgenic expression of Nix converts genetic females into males and allows automated sex sorting in Aedes albopictus

C. Lutrat, R. P. Olmo, T. Baldet, J. Bouyer and E. Marois,  bioRxiv,  2021.07.28.454191. 2021.
Aedes albopictus is a major vector of arboviruses. Better understanding of its sex determination is crucial for developing mosquito control tools, especially genetic sexing strains. In Aedes aegypti, Nix is the primary gene responsible for masculinization and Nix-expressing ...
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Horizontal Transmission of the Symbiont Microsporidia MB in Anopheles arabiensis

G. Nattoh, T. Maina, E. E. Makhulu, L. Mbaisi, E. Mararo, F. G. Otieno, T. Bukhari, T. O. Onchuru, E. Teal, J. Paredes, J. L. Bargul, D. M. Mburu, E. A. Onyango, G. Magoma, S. P. Sinkins and J. K. Herren,  Frontiers in Microbiology,  12. 2021.
The recently discovered Anopheles symbiont, Microsporidia MB, has a strong malaria transmission-blocking phenotype in Anopheles arabiensis, the predominant Anopheles gambiae species complex member in many active transmission areas in eastern Africa. The ability of Microsporidia ...
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Gene-drive suppression of mosquito populations in large cages as a bridge between lab and field

A. Hammond, P. Pollegioni, T. Persampieri, A. North, R. Minuz, A. Trusso, A. Bucci, K. Kyrou, I. Morianou, A. Simoni, T. Nolan, R. Müller and A. Crisanti,  Nature Communications,  12:4589. 2021.
CRISPR-based gene-drives targeting the gene doublesex in the malaria vector Anopheles gambiae effectively suppressed the reproductive capability of mosquito populations reared in small laboratory cages. To bridge the gap between laboratory and the field, this gene-drive ...
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Oxitec and MosquitoMate in the United States: lessons for the future of gene drive mosquito control

C. E. Schairer, J. Najera, A. A. James, O. S. Akbari and C. S. Bloss,  Pathogens and Global Health,  2021.
ABSTRACTIn response to growing concerns regarding mosquito-borne diseases, scientists are developing novel systems of vector control. Early examples include Oxitec?s OX513A genetically-engineered mosquito and MosquitoMate?s Wolbachia-infected mosquito, and systems using ...
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Gene drive strategies of pest control in agricultural systems: challenges and opportunities

M. Legros, J. M. Marshall, S. Macfadyen, K. R. Hayes, A. Sheppard and L. G. Barrett,  Evolutionary Applications,  2021.
Abstract Recent advances in gene editing technologies have opened new avenues for genetic pest control strategies, in particular around the use of gene drives to suppress or modify pest populations. Significant uncertainty, however, surrounds the applicability of these strategies ...
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Risk management recommendations for environmental releases of gene drive modified insects

Y. Devos, J. D. Mumford, M. B. Bonsall, D. C. M. Glandorf and H. D. Quemada,  Biotechnology Advances,  2021.
The ability to engineer gene drives (genetic elements that bias their own inheritance) has sparked enthusiasm and concerns. Engineered gene drives could potentially be used to address long-standing challenges in the control of insect disease vectors, agricultural pests and ...
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Wolbachia as translational science: controlling mosquito-borne pathogens

E. P. Caragata, H. L. C. Dutra, P. H. F. Sucupira, A. G. A. Ferreira and L. A. Moreira,  Trends in Parasitology,  2021.
In this review we examine how exploiting the Wolbachia?mosquito relationship has become an increasingly popular strategy for controlling arbovirus transmission. Field deployments of Wolbachia-infected mosquitoes have led to significant decreases in dengue virus incidence via high ...
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CRISPR/Cas-9 mediated knock-in by homology dependent repair in the West Nile Virus vector Culex quinquefasciatus Say

D.-K. Purusothaman, L. Shackleford, M. A. E. Anderson, T. Harvey-Samuel and L. Alphey,  Scientific Reports,  11:14964. 2021.
Culex quinquefasciatus Say is a mosquito distributed in both tropical and subtropical regions of the world. It is a night-active, opportunistic blood-feeder and vectors many animal and human diseases, including West Nile Virus and avian malaria. Current vector control methods ...
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Using Moderate Transgene Expression to Improve the Genetic Sexing System of the Australian Sheep Blow Fly Lucilia cuprina

Y. Yan, M. E. Williamson and M. J. Scott,  Insects,  11. 2021.
The sterile insect technique (SIT) is a promising strategy to control the Australian sheep blow fly Lucilia cuprina, a major pest of sheep. We have previously developed a transgenic embryonic sexing system (TESS) for this pest to facilitate the potential SIT application. TESS ...
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Combating mosquito-borne diseases using genetic control technologies

G.-H. Wang, S. Gamez, R. R. Raban, J. M. Marshall, L. Alphey, M. Li, J. L. Rasgon and O. S. Akbari,  Nature Communications,  12:4388. 2021.
Mosquito-borne diseases, such as dengue and malaria, pose significant global health burdens. Unfortunately, current control methods based on insecticides and environmental maintenance have fallen short of eliminating the disease burden. Scalable, deployable, genetic-based ...
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The Possible Role of Microorganisms in Mosquito Mass Rearing

L. Chersoni, A. Checcucci, M. Malfacini, A. Puggioli, F. Balestrino, M. Carrieri, I. Piunti, M. L. Dindo, P. Mattarelli and R. Bellini,  Insects,  12. 2021.
In Europe, one of the most significant mosquitoes of public health importance is Aedes albopictus (Skuse), an allochthonous species of Asian origin. One of the most promising control methods against Aedes albopictus is the sterile insect technique (SIT), which consists of mass ...
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Sterile Insect Technique (SIT) and Its Applications

K. Bourtzis and M. J. B. Vreysen,  Insects,  12. 2021.
Although most insect species have a beneficial role in the ecosystems, some of them represent major plant pests and disease vectors for livestock and humans. During the last six–seven decades, the sterile insect technique (SIT) has been used as part of area-wide integrated pest ...
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Targeting Conserved Sequences Circumvents the Evolution of Resistance in a Viral Gene Drive against Human Cytomegalovirus

M. Walter, R. Perrone, E. Verdin and F. Goodrum,  Journal of Virology,  95:e00802-21. 2021.
Gene drives are genetic systems designed to efficiently spread a modification through a population. They have been designed almost exclusively in eukaryotic species, especially in insects. We recently developed a CRISPR-based gene drive system in herpesviruses that relies on ...
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Earth system interventions as technologies of the Anthropocene

J. L. Reynolds,  Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions,  40:132-146. 2021.
Earth system interventions (ESIs)—intentional large-scale interventions in Earth systems—are not entirely new. However, in response to threats to sustainability, particularly from climate change and biodiversity loss, some scientists and others are researching, developing, ...
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Improvement of the Mass-Rearing Protocols for the South American Fruit Fly for Application of the Sterile Insect Technique

T. Mastrangelo, A. Kovaleski, B. Maset, M. D. Costa, C. Barros, L. A. Lopes and C. Caceres,  Insects,  12. 2021.
The existing rearing protocols for Anastrepha fraterculus must be reviewed to make economically viable the production of sterile flies for their area-wide application. Additionally, evidence of sexual incompatibility between a long-term mass-reared Brazilian strain and wild ...
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Comparative response to post-production process of two Anastrepha ludens strains: Application in the sterile insect technique

J. Arredondo, J. F. Aguirre-Medina, J. S. Meza, J. Cancino and F. Diaz-Fleischer,  Journal of Applied Entomology,  11. 2021.
The new desiccation-resistant (DR) strain of Anastrepha ludens Loew differs in its life-history traits from the non-selected strain (NS). Given the innate resistance of DR flies to stressors, it is necessary to determine the packing and shipment conditions for their use in the ...
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Distinct spermiogenic phenotypes underlie sperm elimination in the Segregation Distorter meiotic drive system

M. Herbette, X. L. Wei, C. H. Chang, A. M. Larracuente, B. Loppin and R. Dubruille,  PLOS Genetics,  17:26. 2021.
Here we show that SD/SD+ males of different genotypes but with similarly strong degrees of distortion have distinct spermiogenic phenotypes. In some genotypes, SD+ spermatids fail to fully incorporate protamines after the removal of histones, and degenerate during the ...
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Effect of the timing of pupal irradiation on the quality and sterility of oriental fruit flies (Diptera: Tephritidae) for use in Sterile Insect Technique

T. J. Fezza, P. A. Follett and T. E. Shelly,  Applied Entomology and Zoology,  8. 2021.
The Sterile Insect Technique (SIT) is a target-specific, biologically based method used to control pestiferous tephritids entailing the release of mass-reared, sterilized males of the target species to achieve sterile male x wild female matings. As documented for several ...
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Effect of the timing of pupal irradiation on the quality and sterility of oriental fruit flies (Diptera: Tephritidae) for use in Sterile Insect Technique

T. J. Fezza, P. A. Follett and T. E. Shelly,  Applied Entomology and Zoology,  8. 2021.
The Sterile Insect Technique (SIT) is a target-specific, biologically based method used to control pestiferous tephritids entailing the release of mass-reared, sterilized males of the target species to achieve sterile male x wild female matings. As documented for several ...
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Gene drive that results in addiction to a temperature sensitive version of an essential gene triggers population collapse in Drosophila

G. Oberhofer, B. Hay and T. Ivy,  bioRxiv,  2021.07.03.451005. 2021.
One strategy for population suppression seeks to use gene drive to spread genes that confer conditional lethality or sterility, providing a way of combining population modification with suppression. Stimuli of potential interest could be introduced by humans, such as an otherwise ...
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