Sterile Insect Technique

pp 427-451

Genetic Sexing Strains in Mediterranean Fruit Fly, an Example for Other Species Amenable to Large-Scale Rearing for the Sterile Insect Technique

  • G. FranzAffiliated withFAO/IAEA Agriculture and Biotechnology Laboratory

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Through genetic and molecular manipulations, strains can be developed that are more suitable for the sterile insect technique (SIT). In this chapter the development of genetic sexing strains (GSSs) is given as an example. GSSs increase the effectiveness of area-wide integrated pest management (AW-IPM) programmes that use the SIT by enabling the large-scale release of only sterile males. For species that transmit disease, the removal of females is mandatory. For the Mediterranean fruit fly Ceratitis capitata (Wiedemann), genetic sexing systems have been developed; they are stable enough to be used in operational programmes for extended periods of time. Until recently, the only way to generate such strains was through Mendelian genetics. In this chapter, the basic principle of translocation-based sexing strains is described, and Mediterranean fruit fly strains are used as examples to indicate the problems encountered in such strains. Furthermore, the strategies used to solve these problems are described. The advantages of following molecular strategies in the future development of sexing strains are outlined, especially for species where little basic knowledge of genetics exists.