A current perspective on insect gene transformation

Insect Biochem Mol Biol. 2001 Feb;31(2):111-28. doi: 10.1016/s0965-1748(00)00159-4.


The genetic transformation of non-drosophilid insects is now possible with several systems, with germ-line transformation reported in published and unpublished accounts for about 12 species using four different transposon vectors. For some of these species, transformation can now be considered routine. Other vector systems include viruses and bacterial symbionts that have demonstrated utility in species and applications requiring transient expression, and for some, the potential exists for genomic integration. Many of these findings are quite recent, presenting a dramatic turning point in our ability to study and manipulate agriculturally and medically important insects. This review discusses these findings from the perspective of all the contributions that has made this technology a reality, the research that has yet to be done for its safe and efficient use in a broader range of species, and an overview of the available methodology to effectively utilize these systems.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Animals, Genetically Modified
  • Biomarkers
  • DNA Transposable Elements
  • Gene Targeting
  • Gene Transfer Techniques
  • Genes, Insect*
  • Humans
  • Retroviridae
  • Risk Assessment / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Symbiosis
  • Transformation, Genetic*


  • Biomarkers
  • DNA Transposable Elements