The O'Brochta Laboratory
Interest in the laboratory focuses on insect molecular genetics with particular interest in the study of insects that transmit human diseases although our interests are very broad. Our interests in genetics center around the study of transposable elements. Those interests range from questions concerning their basic biology and aspects of their movement to more applied question concerning their development and use as genome manipulation tools. Our insect interests are centered mainly on mosquitoes and the physiological genetics of Plasmodium infection.
Research is currenly focused on a number of projects:
- Transposon-based forward genetic analysis of Anopheles mosquitoes.
- Charateristics of DNA neighboring transposable elements in modulating element activity.
- Increasing Plasmodium falciparum sporozoite production through mosquito genetic modification - a collaboration with SANARIA, Inc., Rockville, MD.
- Developing transgenic technologies for the coffee berry borer, Hypothenemus hampei - a collaboration with CENCAFE, Colombia)
- Characterization of Helicoverpa Sex Peptide(s) and its regulatory role in mating bahavior - a collaboration with Dr. Ada Rafaeli, Agriculture Research Organization, Israel.