CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing in the West Nile Virus vector, Culex quinquefasciatus Say

Culex quinquefasciatus Say is an opportunistic blood feeder with a wide geographic distribution which is also a major vector for a range of diseases of both animals and humans. CRISPR/Cas technologies have been applied to a wide variety of organisms for both applied and basic research purposes. CRISPR/Cas methods open new possibilities for genetic research in non-model organisms of public health importance. In this work we have adapted microinjection techniques commonly used in other mosquito species to Culex quinquefasciatus, and have shown these to be effective at generating homozygous knock-out mutations of a target gene in one generation. This is the first description of the kmo gene and mutant phenotype in this species.

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