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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Research Project: IMPROVED MASS REARING OF INSECTS FOR BIOLOGICAL CONTROL PROGRAMS THROUGH ADVANCED NUTRITION AND QUALITY CONTROL ANALYSES

Location: Biological Control of Insects Research

Project Number: 3622-22000-030-00
Project Type: Appropriated

Start Date: Jun 16, 2005
End Date: Mar 25, 2010

Objective:
To accelerate and enhance the formulation of high performance insect diets that improve the fitness of mass reared insects used in research and insects used in the biological control of insect and weed pests by: 1) improving the formulation of artificial diets and diet-delivery systems; 2) determining the impact of nutrient substitutions on the efficiency of diet utilization; and 3) developing genomic biomarkers to monitor fitness traits related to nutrition.

Approach:
Formulation changes will be made to micronutrient levels and substitutions will be made for the fibrous, temperature sensitive and antibiotic materials in artificial diets as part of an empirical-based effort to improve artificial diets. Life history measurements will be used to assess the impact those dietary changes on the health of the insect. The impact of dietary component changes on the biochemical fate of nutrients will be monitored. Enzymatic activity and metabolism of nutrients will be used to assess the impact of dietary changes on the efficiency of nutrient absorbance and nutrient utilization. The use of genomic biomarkers as indicators of fitness for insects reared on diets varying in nutritional quality will be investigated. Differentially-expressed genes will be identified using suppressive subtractive hybridization and microarray analyses.

Last Modified: 9/29/2014
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