Navigation Links
How pest insects might adapt to climate change, affecting agriculture and health

RIVERSIDE, Calif. Entomologist Peter Atkinson will give a free, public lecture at the University of California, Riverside on May 20 in which he will discuss the evidence for climate change and the impact pest insects have had on it through recorded history.

Titled "Tipping the Scales? Pest Insects, Agriculture and Health," the hour-long lecture will begin at 7 p.m. in Room 302, Highlander Union Building, formerly the Commons. Doors open at 6:15 p.m. Seating is open.

In his talk, Atkinson, a professor of entomology and the director of the Center for Disease Vector Research at UC Riverside, will explain what makes an insect a pest, and how we can now begin to measure genetic diversity in insect populations in order to try and predict how successful a given species or population might adapt to climate change.

"There is no doubt that climate change is occurring and will have profound impacts on future generations," he said. "Understanding how insects adapt, and the molecular basis of this adaptation, will be important if we are to maintain our food supply and health.

"There is considerable debate as to how climate change will affect the distribution of insects, especially pest insects. History does tell us, however, that changes in pest insect distribution, for whatever reason, can have profound effects on agriculture and health. So we need to "get ahead" of the question and determine, using data, the likelihood of climate change affecting the distribution of given pest species."

At UCR, Atkinson develops genetic-based technologies and tools that help reduce the ability of insects to transmit human diseases such as malaria and dengue. Specifically, he works on the fundamental agents of evolution called "transposons," which are sequences of DNA, present in nearly every organism on Earth, that can move around to different positions within the genome of a single cell. He studies the basic function of the structure of transposons and investigates their role in the genetic control of insect vectors of human disease. His lab also develops hyperactive transposons in order to understand the molecular basis of hyperactivity and how transposons function.

Atkinson obtained his Ph.D. in genetics from the University of Melbourne, Australia. He joined UCR's Department of Entomology in 1997 after a postodoctoral appointment at Syracuse University, NY, followed by an appointment as a research scientist in the Division of Entomology of the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation in Canberra, Australia. He has published in peer-reviewed scientific journals on genetics, molecular biology, genomics and insect science.

His talk is being hosted by UCR's College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences and the Science Circle, a group of university and community members committed to advancing science at UCR and in Inland Southern California.

The talk is the fourth of five lectures scheduled this year. The lecture series, titled "Global Climate Change: Causes, Impacts, Solutions," aims to boost the public's awareness and understanding of climate change and of how science works.


Contact: Iqbal Pittalwala
University of California - Riverside

Related medicine news :

1. Diet of contaminated insects harms endangered meat-eating plants
2. If Your Spouse Gets Alzheimers, You Might, Too
3. Surgery for Treatable Dementia Might Also Help in Alzheimers
4. New Migraine Drug Might Be Safer for Some
5. Gene-Targeted Therapy Might Help Prevent Paralysis
6. Weather Might Influence Prostate Cancer
7. Tanning Bed Use Might Become Addictive
8. Supplements Might Reduce Breast Cancer Risk
9. Routine breast cancer biopsy might predict lymph node cancer spread
10. Job Stress Might Actually Help You Smoke Less
11. Magnets Might Boost Stem Cell Therapy
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/25/2016)... Oklahoma (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2016 , ... ... both athletes and non-athletes recover from injury. Recently, he has implemented orthobiologic procedures ... Oklahoma City area —Johnson is one of the first doctors to perform the ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Those who have experienced traumatic ... many turn to unhealthy avenues, such as drug or alcohol abuse, as a coping ... released tools for healthy coping following a traumatic event. , Trauma sufferers tend to ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... Global law ... magazine’s 2016 Legal Elite. The attorneys chosen by their peers for this recognition are ... , Seven Greenberg Traurig Shareholders received special honors as members of this year’s Legal ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... People across the U.S. are sharpening their pencils ... an essay contest in which patients and their families pay tribute to a genetic ... 2016 National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC) Annual Education Conference (AEC) this September. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... feeding the Frederick area economy by obtaining investment capital for emerging technology companies. ... 2½ years that have already resulted in more than a million dollars of ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016  Arkis BioSciences, a ... invasive and more durable cerebrospinal fluid treatments, today ... The Series-A funding is led by Innova Memphis, ... and other private investors.  Arkis, new financing will ... and the market release of its in-licensed Endexo® ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. , June 23, 2016 ... faced the many challenges of the current process. Many of ... option because of the technical difficulties and high laboratory costs ... would have to offer it at such a high cost ... to afford it. Dr. Parsa Zadeh , ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Roche (SIX: RO, ROG; OTCQX: RHHBY) announced ... BRAHMS PCT (procalcitonin) assay as a dedicated testing solution ... this clearance, Roche is the first IVD company in ... sepsis risk assessment and management. PCT is ... levels in blood can aid clinicians in assessing the ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: