Benefits of Transgenic Insects
The development of methods to make transgenic insects has provided a powerful genetic tool for insect pest management. Transgenic insect strains have the potential to suppress or eradicate species such as the livestock pest New World screwworm and the fruit pest Mediterranean fruit fly.
Recent studies with mosquitoes have demonstrated the potential to replace or suppress these disease vectors with populations that are unable or less competent to transmit diseases such as malaria and dengue fever.
Transgenic insects can also be used to study gene function and to produce proteins of commercial interest.
The Genetic Pest Management program at North Carolina State University operates an insect transgenesis facility that houses state of the art equipment for making transgenic organisms through the use of microinjection technology.
This equipment includes:
- Laser based needle puller and beveler
- Micromanipulator and microinjector
- Light and fluorescent microscopes
- Cameras to capture static, overlayed, multifocus (“3-D”) and multitime (“video”) color images
Tours and Training
The facility manager provides:
- Tours including a hands-on experience of microinjection
- Ongoing support services
- Technical expertise in transformation technology and insect rearing
To visit the insect transgenesis facility, request training or use the equipment, please contact the facility manager at firstname.lastname@example.org to make arrangements. The facility is located on the North Campus of NC State in 1551 Thomas Hall.
Equipment in the facility was largely funded by an Institutional Development Grant from the North Carolina Biotechnology Center.