Congratulations to Dr Amanda Choo from the School of Biological Sciences and Waite Research Institute, who was recently awarded a Discovery Early Career Researcher Award. 

Dr Choo’s project, ‘Facilitating control of Queensland fruit fly and other insect pests’, aims to address the need for a Queensland fruit fly male-only sterile release strain for the national Sterile Insect Technique program to control this devastating Australian horticulture pest. By combining two molecular technologies in a new strain that responds to temperature cues to trigger development of only male flies, this project expects to produce twice as many sterile males for release to mate with wild females in fruit fly outbreak areas, preventing production of the next generation. Expected outcomes include significant reduction in production costs and increased efficiency of the national sterile release program, facilitating control of this damaging pest to protect Australia’s billion dollar horticultural industry.

Queensland fruit fly (Bactrocera tryoni)

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