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Use of Wolbachia to drive nuclear transgenes through insect populations

Sinkins, Steven P. and Godfray, H. C. J. (2004) 'Use of Wolbachia to drive nuclear transgenes through insect populations'. Proceedings of the Royal Society B-Biological Sciences, Vol 271, Issue 1546, pp. 1421-1426.

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Wolbachia is an inherited intracellular bacterium found in many insects of medical and economic importance. The ability of many strains to spread through populations using cytoplasmic incompatibility, involving sperm modification and rescue, provides a powerful mechanism for driving beneficial transgenes through insect populations, if such transgenes could be inserted into and expressed by Wolbachia. However, manipulating Wolbachia in this way has not yet been achieved. Here, we demonstrate theoretically an alternative mechanism whereby nuclear rather than cytoplasmic transgenes could be driven through populations, by linkage to a nuclear gene able to rescue modified sperm. The spread of a 'nuclear rescue construct' occurs as long as the Wolbachia show imperfect maternal transmission under natural conditions and/or imperfect rescue of modified sperm. The mechanism is most efficient when the target population is already infected with Wolbachia at high frequency, whether naturally or by the sequential release of Wolbachia-infected individuals and subsequently the nuclear rescue construct. The results provide a potentially powerful addition to the few insect transgene drive mechanisms that are available.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: cytoplasmic incompatibility rescue mosquito wolbachia yellow-fever mosquito cytoplasmic incompatibility drosophila-simulans aedes-aegypti germline transformation natural-populations anopheles-gambiae infection dynamics transmission
Subjects: WA Public Health > Preventive Medicine > WA 110 Prevention and control of communicable diseases. Transmission of infectious diseases
WC Communicable Diseases > Rickettsiaceae Infections. Chlamydiaceae Infections > WC 600 Rickettsiaceae infections. Chlamydiaceae infections. Tick-borne diseases
WC Communicable Diseases > Tropical and Parasitic Diseases > WC 850 Nematode infections (General)
Faculty: Department: Groups (2002 - 2012) > Vector Group
Digital Object Identifer (DOI):
Depositing User: Sarah Lewis-Newton
Date Deposited: 17 Jan 2012 14:28
Last Modified: 06 Feb 2018 13:03


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