Navigation Links
Tsetse fly genetic code sequenced
Date:4/25/2014

Scientists at the University of Liverpool have been part of a ten-year project which has successfully sequenced the genetic code of the tsetse fly making major advances in disease control possible.

Tsetse flies are unique to Africa and can infect people bitten by them with sleeping sickness, a disease which damages the nervous system and is fatal if untreated. This kills over 250,000 people each year.

Traditional methods of control such as releasing sterile males, trapping and pesticide spraying are expensive and difficult to implement. Sleeping sickness can also evade the immune system, making a vaccine hard to create, so the genetic information will allow researchers to develop alternative strategies to control the disease.

Geneticist, Professor Neil Hall is one of the project leaders. He said: "Essentially we have decoded and annotated the the genetic sequence which makes up the tsetse fly. We are now able to identify the genes which control some of its unique physiology including breeding and diet.

"This paves the way for further research into destroying or controlling the flies before they infect human populations in Africa."

Tsetse flies are a unique species in many aspects of their behaviour. They only feed on the blood of vertebrates and they also give birth to live young, rather than laying eggs, and feed these young with a substance which is chemically similar to milk. The new information will also help evolutionary biologists compare the flies with other insects to determine how this unique species developed.

Almost 140 scientists have worked on sequencing and annotating of the Tsetse fly - Glossina morsitans. Professor Hall alongside colleagues Professors Christiane Hertz-Fowler and Alistair Darby at the University's Institute of Integrative Biology were involved in the project set-up and design, as well as much of the analysis.

Initial automated mapping of the genome was examined in more detail by specialist researchers to closely identify genes involved in topics such as smell, taste, vision, reproduction, digestion, blood feeding, immunity, metabolism and stress response.

All of the findings from the project called the International Glossina Genome Initiative have been uploaded to a free genomic database on the tsetse fly, so that scientists around the world can use them for research. The project is ongoing and more information will be added over time.

Professor Hall concluded: "Decoding this genome has been a long and painstaking process, but now that the data is available to researchers, a range of possibilities for controlling sleeping sickness have opened up."


'/>"/>
Contact: Jamie Brown
jamie.brown@liverpool.ac.uk
44-151-794-2248
University of Liverpool
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Genetic code of the deadly tsetse fly unraveled
2. Genetic legacy of rare dwarf trees is widespread
3. Autism Genome Project delivers genetic discovery
4. Genetics risk, prenatal smoking may predict behavioral problems
5. Genetic study tackles mystery of slow plant domestications
6. New technique will accelerate genetic characterization of photosynthesis
7. Genetic pre-disposition toward exercise and mental development may be linked
8. Genetically modified tobacco plants as an alternative for producing bioethanol
9. Yeast provides genetic clues on drug response
10. Identified epigenetic factors associated with an increased risk of developing cancer
11. Exploring the genetics of Ill do it tomorrow
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/9/2016)... , March 9, 2016  Crossmatch ® , ... enrollment solutions, today announced the addition of smart ... Altus multi-factor authentication platform. New contextual and ... to step-up security where it,s needed most — ... Washington, DC . --> ...
(Date:3/3/2016)... SOTO, Kansas , March 3, 2016 ... Oncimmune,s Early CDT®-Lung, a blood test to aid ... cancer Early CDT®-Lung test to its clients ... Early CDT®-Lung test to its clients which include ... a leader in early cancer detection, today announced a ...
(Date:3/1/2016)... FRANCISCO , March 1, 2016  (RSAC Booth ... year, but a whopping $118 billion is lost to ... to overzealous and inaccurate fraud detection. At the RSA ... in the way companies handle authentication by devaluing the ... and behavioral analytics. --> ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/29/2016)... , ... April 29, 2016 , ... Summit for Stem ... support the development of a patient-specific stem cell therapy for the treatment of Parkinson’s ... of Dr. Jeanne Loring at The Scripps Research Institute in San Diego, CA. ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... 2016 Q BioMed Inc. ... CEO  was featured in an article he wrote ... Fear To Tread: http://www.lifescienceleader.com/doc/accelerators-enter-when-vcs-fear-to-tread-0001 ... is an essential business journal for life science ... to Big Pharmas. Their content is designed to ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... ... April 28, 2016 , ... Morris Midwest ... house for regional manufacturers at its Maple Grove, Minnesota technical center, May 11-12. ... Chiron and Trumpf. Almost 20 leading suppliers of tooling, accessories, software and ...
(Date:4/27/2016)... ... April 27, 2016 , ... Most consumers engage ... fingerprint recognition for secure access, voice recognition for hands-free communication, and facial recognition ... interacting with biometrics technology today. But if they asked Joey Pritikin, Vice ...
Breaking Biology Technology: