Asian Longhorned Beetle (ALB) Anoplophora glabripennis is a serious invasive forest pest in several countries including the United States, Canada, and Europe. RNA interference (RNAi) technology is being developed as a novel method for pest management. Here, we identified the ALB core RNAi genes including those coding for Dicer, Argonaute, and double-stranded RNA-binding proteins (dsRBP) as well as for proteins involved in dsRNA transport and the systemic RNAi. We also compared expression of six potential reference genes that could be used to normalize gene expression and selected gapdh and rpl32 as the most reliable genes among different tissues and stages of ALB. Injection of double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) targeting gene coding for inhibitor of apoptosis (IAP) into larvae and adults resulted in a significant knockdown of this gene and caused the death of 90% of the larvae and 100% of adults. No mortality of both larvae and adults injected with dsRNA targeting gene coding for green fluorescence protein (GFP, as a negative control) was observed. These data suggest that functional RNAi machinery exists in ALB and a potential RNAi-based method could be developed for controlling this insect.

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Published in Scientific Reports, v. 7, article no. 8913, p. 1-10.

© The Author(s) 2017

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This work was funded by USDA Farm Bill Section 10007 (FY2016 suggestion number 6.0299, APHIS agreement 16-8130-0675-CA) and by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USDA, HATCH under 2351177000.

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This is publication number 17-08-082 from the Kentucky Agricultural Experimental Station and is published with the approval of the director.