Author ORCID Identifier

https://orcid.org/0000-0002-4648-9193

Year of Publication

2020

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Document Type

Master's Thesis

College

Agriculture, Food and Environment

Department

Entomology

First Advisor

Dr. Subba Reddy Palli

Abstract

Due to the increased interactions between the sylvatic and urban cycles of Aedes aegypti life cycle, there has been an increase in the incidence of vector-borne diseases. The risk involved through the transmission of viruses like Dengue, Zika, Yellow-fever and Chikungunya calls for an effective control method for the deadly vector. The possibility of pesticide resistance and the costs involved in producing new pesticides have pushed Sterile Insect Technique (SIT) into prominence. However, current methods used to sterize insects for SIT are not highly efficient. This study tackles current issues in mosquito control by identifying and characterizing epigenetic regulators that could be used for larval control and genes that could be used for sterilization of adult males. RNanoparticle conjugated dsRNAs targeting genes coding for epigenetic regulators, Histone acetyltransferases, deacetylases, methylases and demethylases induced premature death of Ae. aegypti during late larval and early-mid pupal stages. The study also identified 34 testes-specific genes using a Concomitant evaluation of Distinctness and similarity (CDS) statistical test. Three genes (PAN1, CFAP299, H1) were knockedout using CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing method. The knockout males crossed with wild-type males caused a decrease in egg production (71.2% in PAN1, 81.9% in CFAP299 and 97.5% in H1) by females suggesting that these genes could be used to sterilize males for SIT.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

https://doi.org/10.13023/etd.2020.317

Available for download on Thursday, July 28, 2022

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