Chironomus riparius (syn. C.thummi) (Chironomidae)
The harlequin fly Chironomus riparius represents the mosquito branch of lower dipterans but does not sting. It is common in North America and Europe and rather easy to maintain as a laboratory culture. The estimated genome size of Chironomus riparius is about 195 Mb for both sexes (Schmidt-Ott et al. 2009) i.e., only slightly larger than of Drosophila melanogaster (175 Mb). Chironomus riparius has a long history in biological rsearch (Sander 2000). Protocols for in situ hybridization, antibody staining, RNAi and mRNA injection in embryos have been established (Klomp et al. 2015). The species is also used in toxicology tests.
Publications from the Schmidt-Ott lab:
- Klomp J, Athy D, Kwan CW, Bloch N, Sandmann T, Lemke S. Schmidt-Ott, U (2015). A cysteine-clamp gene drives embryo polarity in the midge Chironomus. Science, in press.
- Schmidt-Ott, U., Rafiqi, Ab. M., Sander, K., Johnston, J. S. (2009). Extremely small genomes in two unrelated dipteran insects with shared early developmental traits. Dev. Genes. Evol. 219, 207–210
- Sander, K (2000) Chironomus embryology in the 19th century: Insights and errors of its pioneers, especially August Weismann (1834-1914), and some 20th century sequels. In: Odwin Hoffrichter (ed) Late 20th century research in Chironomidae: an anthology from the 13th international symposium on Chironomidae. Aachen, Shaker Verlag, pp 1-16.