In my laboratory we study two areas of entomology. The first focuses on the endocrine control of development and reproduction in insects. We study two hormones, juvenile hormone (JH) and ecdysone, that control metamorphosis, and we use both Drosophila melanogaster and the mosquito Aedes aegypti as our research insects. We have identified one gene, Methoprene-tolerant (Met), involved in the molecular action of JH. Methoprene is one of several insecticides that has been developed based on JH, and Met flies are resistant to them. We use genetics and molecular biology to learn how Met and JH control reproduction and how they interact with ecdysone-controlled genes to fine-tune metamorphosis. The second area focuses on insect resistance to a variety of insecticides. We study the genes and mechanisms that permit resistant insects to survive exposure to these toxins. Thus, our work has practical consequences for controlling agricultural and medical insect pests as well as for contributing to our understanding of basic biology.
- Endocrine control of development and reproduction in insects
- Insect resistance to insecticides
- PhD 1975 University of Tennessee