Rinehart, Joseph P
USDA-ARS-PA Insect Genetics & Biochemistry Res.
1605 Albrecht Blvd. North (Mailing Address)
Fargo ND 58102-2765
The Mission of the Insect Genetics and Biochemistry Research Unit is to investigate fundamental problems related to crop protection and production, and to improve the effectiveness of insects used in Integrated Pest Management Programs for control of pest insects and weeds. Primary research projects include: 1) develop cold storage methods for beneficial insects and insects used in sterile release programs and cryopreservation methods for preservation of germplasm; 2) develop markers to measure the effects of photoperiods, temperature, and host quality on reproduction and diapause; 3) identifying molecular markers useful for distinguishing closely related species and populations of pest and beneficial insects; 4) examine role of Wolbachia bacteria in creating genetically distinct insect populations; 5) characterizing surface and internal lipids and their function for pest and beneficial insects, and the effect of lipids on interactions of natural enemies with their hosts; 6) characterizing feeding mechanisms and interactions with host plants for homopteran pest insects to determine resistant characteristics in plants.