Manipulating insect sex determination pathways for genetic pest management: Opportunities and challenges

Siddall, Alexandra, Harvey-Samuel, Tim, Chapman, Tracey and Leftwich, Philip T. ORCID: (2022) Manipulating insect sex determination pathways for genetic pest management: Opportunities and challenges. Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology, 10. ISSN 2296-4185

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Sex determination pathways in insects are generally characterised by an upstream primary signal, which is highly variable across species, and that regulates the splicing of a suite of downstream but highly-conserved genes (transformer, doublesex and fruitless). In turn, these downstream genes then regulate the expression of sex-specific characteristics in males and females. Identification of sex determination pathways has and continues to be, a critical component of insect population suppression technologies. For example, “first-generation” transgenic technologies such as fsRIDL (Female-Specific Release of Insects carrying Dominant Lethals) enabled efficient selective removal of females from a target population as a significant improvement on the sterile insect technique (SIT). Second-generation technologies such as CRISPR/Cas9 homing gene drives and precision-guided SIT (pgSIT) have used gene editing technologies to manipulate sex determination genes in vivo. The development of future, third-generation control technologies, such as Y-linked drives, (female to male) sex-reversal, or X-shredding, will require additional knowledge of aspects of sexual development, including a deeper understanding of the nature of primary signals and dosage compensation. This review shows how knowledge of sex determination in target pest species is fundamental to all phases of the development of control technologies.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Funding: AS is supported by a UKRI Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) Norwich Research Park Biosciences Doctoral Training Partnership (Grant No. BB/M011216/1). TH-S was supported by core funding made to Luke Alphey from the BBSRC to The Pirbright Institute (BBS/E/I/00007033, BBS/E/I/00007038 and BBS/E/I/00007039). PL and TC were also supported by funding from the BBSRC (Grant: BB/K000489/1 awarded to PL, TC and MI Hutchings), TC was additionally supported by funding from the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) (Grant NE/R010056/1 awarded to TC, AA Maklakov and WG Rostant).
Uncontrolled Keywords: dosage compensation,doublesex (dsx),gene drive,release of insects carrying a dominant lethal,sex conversion,sex determination’,sterile insect technique (sit),tra,biotechnology,bioengineering,histology,biomedical engineering ,/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/1300/1305
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Science > School of Biological Sciences
UEA Research Groups: Faculty of Science > Research Centres > Centre for Ecology, Evolution and Conservation
Faculty of Science > Research Groups > Organisms and the Environment
Faculty of Science > Research Groups > Biosciences Teaching and Education Research
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Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 11 Jul 2022 12:30
Last Modified: 15 May 2023 00:53
DOI: 10.3389/fbioe.2022.867851

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