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ARS Home » Plains Area » Manhattan, Kansas » Center for Grain and Animal Health Research » ABADRU » Research » Research Project #440705

Research Project: Exploring Alternative Uses for Muscid Antimicrobial Effectors

Location: Arthropod-borne Animal Diseases Research

Project Number: 3020-32000-018-015-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Aug 1, 2021
End Date: Jul 31, 2026

Overall aim of the project is to identify antimicrobial effector genes in house flies, stable flies, horn flies and/or face flies and to explore applications for these genes and gene products in mitigating agricultural problems. Specific objectives include: 1. Determine muscid immune response to feeding and/or injury by pathogenic microbes; 2. Test microbicidal and microbistatic activity of muscid immune effectors against pathogens of agricultural importance.

Muscid flies will be immune stimulated with pathogenic microbes via feeding or injection assays. Flies will be held for at least 4 h to ensure immune response detection. Total RNA will be extracted from individual flies and sequenced for transcriptome construction. Differential expression will be analyzed and genes of interest determined. Custom peptides derived from differentially expressed genes of interest will be synthesized commercially. Efficacy of custom peptides on agricultural pathogens of interest will be performed by standard 96 well plate MIC assays, culture inhibition assays and/or Kirby-Bauer method incorporating peptide-soaked disks.