White pupae phenotype of tephritids is caused by parallel mutations of a MFS transporter



Ward, Christopher M, Aumann, Roswitha A, Whitehead, Mark A ORCID: 0000-0002-0452-1511, Nikolouli, Katerina, Leveque, Gary, Gouvi, Georgia, Fung, Elisabeth, Reiling, Sarah J, Djambazian, Haig, Hughes, Margaret A ORCID: 0000-0001-7251-6821
et al (show 14 more authors) (2021) White pupae phenotype of tephritids is caused by parallel mutations of a MFS transporter. NATURE COMMUNICATIONS, 12 (1). 491-.

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Abstract

Mass releases of sterilized male insects, in the frame of sterile insect technique programs, have helped suppress insect pest populations since the 1950s. In the major horticultural pests Bactrocera dorsalis, Ceratitis capitata, and Zeugodacus cucurbitae, a key phenotype white pupae (wp) has been used for decades to selectively remove females before releases, yet the gene responsible remained unknown. Here, we use classical and modern genetic approaches to identify and functionally characterize causal wp<sup>-</sup> mutations in these distantly related fruit fly species. We find that the wp phenotype is produced by parallel mutations in a single, conserved gene. CRISPR/Cas9-mediated knockout of the wp gene leads to the rapid generation of white pupae strains in C. capitata and B. tryoni. The conserved phenotype and independent nature of wp<sup>-</sup> mutations suggest this technique can provide a generic approach to produce sexing strains in other major medical and agricultural insect pests.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Animals, Tephritidae, Ceratitis capitata, Insect Proteins, Pest Control, Biological, Amino Acid Sequence, Base Sequence, Pupa, Reproduction, Fertility, Phenotype, Mutation, Female, Male, Genome, Insect, CRISPR-Cas Systems
Divisions: Faculty of Health and Life Sciences
Faculty of Health and Life Sciences > Institute of Infection, Veterinary and Ecological Sciences
Faculty of Health and Life Sciences > Institute of Systems, Molecular and Integrative Biology
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 07 Apr 2021 10:04
Last Modified: 18 Jan 2023 22:54
DOI: 10.1038/s41467-020-20680-5
Related URLs:
URI: https://livrepository.liverpool.ac.uk/id/eprint/3118398