Designer Insects: Glowing Eyes to Self-Destructing Flies


Freshman Seminar

Scientific advances have allowed researchers to “design” organisms through genetic engineering. But what does it mean if an organism has been engineered? While genetic engineering has been fundamental to biological research for decades, it is now making headlines as genetic approaches appear more and more in our everyday lives. Insect pests are one of the major threats to humans as they eat our food, eat our homes, eat us, transmit diseases, and wreak havoc on crops. Increasingly so, cleverly designed genetic engineering approaches are used to stop these insect pests and the diseases they transmit, including Zika and Dengue. In this course, we will explore how insects affect so many aspects of our life, how researchers are using genetic engineering to solve insect issues, and the pros and cons of designing genetically engineered insects. The course will include interactive lectures, short readings and videos, and a variety of discussions with other students and faculty.

Course ID
ENT 1908