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Use of electroporation as an option to transform the horn fly, Haematobia irritans: a species recalcitrant to microinjection

Xu, Qiang, Guerrero, Felix D., Palavesam, Azhahianambi, Pérez de León, Adalberto A.
Insect science 2015 pp. 1-9
Haematobia irritans, Southern blotting, control methods, electroporation, fluorescence, genes, genetic transformation, genomics, insecticide resistance, insects, pests, polymerase chain reaction, pupae, recalcitrant species, sequence analysis, symbionts, transgenic insects
The horn fly, Haematobia irritans, is a serious pest of cattle in North America. The control of horn flies has primarily relied on insecticides. However, the heavy use of insecticides has led to the development of insecticide resistance in horn flies. Novel methods to control horn flies are greatly needed. Transgenic technology is an effective tool to genetically modify insects and may lead to novel methods of pest control based on genomic approaches. Here we report a piggyBac-mediated transformation of the horn fly via electroporation. Transformationwith aDsRed fluorescent marker protein coding region was verified by PCR analysis of individual fly bodies and pupal cases and sequencing of PCR products. However, Southern blot analysis failed to indicate the DsRed gene was integrated into the horn fly genome. Thus, the electroporation protocol may have caused the DsRed gene to be integrated into bacterial symbionts of the horn fly.