Genetically Modified Exotic Ants

So I’m looking to undergo a small scale test on translucent species of ants to see if I can insert the gene to produce bioluminescent proteins and make their exoskeletons or fleshy bits glow in the dark. If I can do so, it would open the discussion of allowing invasive species of ants to be owned by hobbyists in countries where the ants would normally outcompete the native competition. It would also allow ant farm hobbyists to be able to see individual ants better in the dark underground tunnels they make.
Currently, most foreign ant imports and exports are under high scrutiny by governments around the world because of the fear of a few vials of foreign ants turning into a complete invasive takeover of their countries ecosystems. And the fear is well placed. There are many cases around the world where ant hobbyists improperly house their ants and have them escape into the lands around them. There are even people who grow supercolonies of foreign ants and outright throw them into their nearest wooded environment to observe the hostile takeover firsthand. And there are many documented cases, primarily related to the various breeds of crazy ants, of invasive ant takeovers and displacements of native ant species in foreign ecosystems.
Bioluminescence solves this problem by making colony growth outside of an ant farm next to impossible. By making the ants glow at night the proteins expose the ants to nocturnal predators who would be more than happy to have ants, native or otherwise, on the menu. It also allows the colonies to be much easier to detect by invasive species prevention efforts if this becomes a standardized way to tag household invasive species.
There are many people in the world who wish to get a hold of interesting foreign ant breeds and they are often forced to do so by illegal means. This would hopefully legalize the transactions and allow everyone to fully enjoy the hobby of growing and developing an ant colony without fear.

I wanted help to see what kind of materials or tech I would need for this experiment. Also some guidance as to where I could get Cas9 Crispr proteins and jellyfish or zooplankton bioluminescent proteins. Help is much appreciated.


Sign In or Register to comment.