Hessian Fly Genome Project

Image source: PDH at en.wikipedia [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons

About the Project

The BCM-HGSC sequenced the Hessian fly (Mayetiola destructor) in collaboration with Jeff Stuart at Purdue University funded by the USDA. The Hessian fly has a small genome (158 Mb) and polytene chromosomes. It is the world’s most important pest of wheat and a reemerging pest in the United States. It is also a representative of other insect pest species in the dipteran family Cecidomyiidae, and a representative of plant parasites.

The Hessian fly has one of the most detailed physical maps of any insect genome. This whole genome shotgun sequencing project is applying the 454 sequencing platform, to take advantage of lower cost relative to traditional Sanger sequencing.

Funding for this project has been provided by: the USDA (CRESS award 2008-35302-18816)

Genomic Resources

Version 1.0

  • Hessian Fly assembly version 1.0 is available at Genbank.

  • In collaboration with Jeff Stuart we anchored approximately 60% of the genome to a physical genetic map. (Note: There are 4 chromosomes, A1, A2, X1 and X2. A1.3 is the third large sequence placed on Chromosome A1)

  • An additional Blast server is available at KSU.

Version 0.5

Version 0.5 of the assembly, Mdes_0.5 is available. The assembly is described in detail in the README in that directory. Mdes_0.5 is a preliminary genome assembly that has not been localized to chromosomes.

Physical Map

Details about the physical map can be found here.

Additional Resources

Learn more about the Hessian Fly

Related Publications

Zhao C, Shukle R, Navarro-Escalante L, Chen M, Richards S, Stuart JJ. Avirulence gene mapping in the Hessian fly (Mayetiola destructor) reveals a protein phosphatase 2C effector gene family. J Insect Physiol. 2016 ;84:22-31.

Zhao C, Escalante LNavarro, Chen H, Benatti TR, Qu J, Chellapilla S, et al. A massive expansion of effector genes underlies gall-formation in the wheat pest Mayetiola destructor. Curr Biol. 2015 ;25(5):613-20.