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A New Generation of X Ray Irradiators for Insect Sterilization

T. Mastrangelo, A. G. Parker, A. Jessup, R. Pereira, D. Orozco-Dávila, A. Islam, T. Dammalage, J.M.M. Walder
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1603/EC09139 85-94 First published online: 1 February 2010

Abstract

Recent fears of terrorism have provoked an increase in delays and denials of transboundary shipments of radioisotopes. This represents a serious constraint to sterile insect technique (SIT) programs around the world as they rely on the use of ionizing radiation from radioisotopes for insect sterilization. To validate a novel X ray irradiator, a series of studies on Ceratitis capitata (Wiedemann) and Anastrepha fraterculus (Wiedemann) (Diptera: Tephritidae) were carried out, comparing the relative biological effectiveness (RBE) between X rays and traditional γ radiation from 60Co. Male C. capitata pupae and pupae of both sexes of A. fraterculus, both 24–48 h before adult emergence, were irradiated with doses ranging from 15 to 120 Gy and 10–70 Gy, respectively. Estimated mean doses of 91.2 Gy of X and 124.9 Gy of γ radiation induced 99% sterility in C. capitata males. Irradiated A. fraterculus were 99% sterile at ≈40 - 60 Gy for both radiation treatments. Standard quality control parameters and mating indices were not significantly affected by the two types of radiation. The RBE did not differ significantly between the tested X and γ radiation, and X rays are as biologically effective for SIT purposes as γ rays are. This work confirms the suitability of this new generation of X ray irradiators for pest control programs that integrate the SIT.

  • Ceratitis capitata
  • Anastrepha fraterculus
  • X radiation
  • γ radiation
  • irradiation

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