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J Insect Sci. 2012;12:91. doi: 10.1673/031.012.9101.

Silencing of molt-regulating transcription factor gene, CiHR3, affects growth and development of sugarcane stem borer, Chilo infuscatellus.

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Key Laboratory of Biology and Genetic Resources of Tropical Crops, Ministry of Agriculture, Institute of Tropical Bioscience and Biotechnology, Chinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural Science, Haikou, Hainan 571101, P. R. China.


RNA interference (RNAi) is a technology for conducting functional genomic studies and a potential tool for crop protection against insect pests. Development of reliable methods for production and delivery of double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) is the major challenge for efficient pest control. In this study, Chilo infuscatellus Snellen (Crambidae: Lepidoptera) was fed with CiHR3 dsRNA expressed in bacteria or synthesized in vitro. The dsRNA ingested by C. infuscatellus successfully triggered silencing of the molt-regulating transcription factor CiHR3, an important gene for insect growth and development, and caused significant abnormalities and weight loss in insects within seven days of treatment. This study is an ideal example of feeding-based RNAi mediated by dsRNA expressed in bacteria or synthesized in vitro. The results also suggested that feeding-based RNA interference is a potential method for the management of C. infuscatellus.

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