JOURNAL OF ECONOMIC ENTOMOLOGY, vol.109, no.3, pp.987-992, 2016 (SCI-Expanded)
The oriental fruit fly, Bactrocera dorsalis (Hendel), reduces the quantity and quality of many host fruits through the process of oviposition and larval feeding, and this insect has been considered a major insect pest in several Asian countries for decades. Using an earlier-developed, female-specific system that combines the toxicity of the ricin A chain (RTA) and the alternative RNA splicing property of doublesex (Bddsx), we show that transgenic male flies harboring the RTA-Bddsx transgene unevenly repress the pest population through inheritable effects. In age-stage, two-sex life-table analyses, high larval mortality and a delay in pupation were observed after introducing the transgene. The high male to female ratio in DsRed(+) flies demonstrates the lethal effect of ricin on females. The fitness of both the DsRed(+)- and DsRed(-)-transformed females was reduced as shown in the decrease of the net reproductive rate (R-0), intrinsic rate (r), and finite rate (lambda) values compared with the wild-type populations. The integrity of the RTA-Bddsx transgene remained in more than 80% of DsRed(+) males after ten generations, supporting the stable inheritance of the transgene. All of the data from this study support the proposed RTA-Bddsx SIT approach, which provides a species-specific and environmentally friendly method of suppressing, rather than eradiating, B. dorsalis.