At UCR, his research focuses on genetic studies of blood-feeding arthropods, especially mosquitoes, which are responsible for transmitting many different diseases to animals and humans. His accomplishments include being among pioneers of genetic engineering of disease-resistant mosquitoes for the purpose of mosquito control.
Raikhel has deciphered in great molecular detail a chemical chain reaction and genes which prompts disease-spreading mosquitoes to produce and mature their eggs. Manipulation of this process may be key to controlling the mosquito populations responsible for the spread of disease.
His laboratory also uncovered how a female mosquito's first blood meal triggers its reproductive system to produce eggs, a finding that could lead someday to new ways of controlling disease-spreading mosquito populations.
His research team recently identified a pathway by which the mosquito's immune system recognizes some pathogens and protects the mosquito from disease.
Raikhel came to UCR's Department of Entomology in January 2002 from Michigan State University. He is a recipient of many awards, including a Distinguished Faculty Award from Michigan State University and the Entomological Society of America Recognition Award in Insect Physiology, Biochemistry and Toxicology. In 2002, he received a prestigious ten-year, $4.3 million research merit grant from the National Institutes of Health to carry out research on mosquito reproduction.
Raikhel was thrilled and humbled by his election to the NAS.
"I am delighted to see that the NAS recognizes the importance of insect science and vector biology by honoring a researcher in this field," he said. "I am deeply grateful to members of my laboratory, past and present, who contributed to my success and reco
|Contact: Iqbal Pittalwala|
University of California - Riverside