Mosquito intelligence terminator(MIT)

Image description

Fig. 1. Mosquito Intelligent Terminator has three functions: (1) Cry weapon (2) Low-temperature release system (3) Population control system

The Mosquito Intelligent Terminator (MIT) is designed and optimized to be an ecological and environmental friendly mosquito pesticide. MIT is an engineered E. coli secreting crystal proteins isolated from Bacillus thuringiensis to kill mosquito larvae, or commonly known as wrigglers. These crystal proteins are toxic to certain types of mosquitoes only and are not pathogenic to mammals. We designed a temperature-dependent genetic circuit expressing high levels of crystal proteins at room temperature only, thus production does not occur at incubation temperature. In order to make an environmentally safe insecticide, our design also incorporates a genetic circuit controlling the population size of E. coli, thus a surplus will never exist as E. coli population is self-maintained within the system. This intelligent terminator is not limited to mosquitos only, as the intelligent terminator system can be custom fitted with different cry genes to other insect species. Currently, with more than one hundred crystal proteins targeting various insect species, our design may potentially serve as a promising pest control solution in the future.