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Gary Blomquist, Ph.D.


Gary Blomquist

Contact Information

  • Email:
  • Phone: (775) 682-7335
  • Office: Howard Medical Sciences 162
  • Mail Stop: 0330


  • B.S. 1969 University of Wisconsin - La Crosse
  • Ph.D. 1973 Montana State University

Research Interests

The "biorational" approach to insect control involves the development of specific chemicals that interfere with biochemical and physiological processes unique to insects. The goal of our research is to gain an understanding of basic biochemical processes that are unique to insects such that these processes can be exploited for insect control. Toward this end, projects in my laboratory use molecular and biochemical approaches to gain an understanding of the production and endocrine regulation of sex pheromones in the common housefly, the cotton boll weevil and bark beetles.

Other work involves determining the mechanisms of enzymes involved in cuticular lipid formation and studying comparative aspects of fatty acid biochemistry in insects. Bark beetles are extremely destructive forest pests, and we are investigating the processes of how they form their monterpenoid aggregation pheromones. In another project, we have demonstrated that a number of invertebrates can synthesize linoleic acid, which was previously thought to be an essential fatty acid for all animals, and are currently studying the gene for this and other desaturases. The long term goal of this research is to gain the necessary basic information such that environmentally compatible insect control techniques can be developed.

Selected Publications

  • Blomquist, G., Jurenka, R., Schal, C., Tittiger, C. 2012, Pheromone Production: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, In Gilbert, LI (Ed.), Insect Endocrinology (vol. 1, pp. 523-567). Amsterdam: Academic Press - Elsevier.
  • Blomquist, G., Bagneres, A 2010, Introduction, history and overview of insect hydrocarbons., Insect Hydrocarbons: Biology, Biochemistry and Chemical Ecology
  • Blomquist, G., Bagneres, A 2010, Site of synthesis, mechanism of transport and deposition of hydrocarbons., Insect Hydrocarbons: Biology, Biochemistry and Chemical Ecology, Cambridge Press.
  • Blomquist, G 2010, Structure and analysis of insect hydrocarbons., Insect Hydrocarbons: Biology, Biochemistry and Chemical Ecology, Cambridge Press.
  • Feldlauger, M. F., Blomquist, G. 2011, Cuticular hydrocarbons from the bed bug Cimex lectularius L., Biochemical Systematics and Ecology, Elsevier, 39, 283-285.
  • Bearfield, J. C., Box, C. I., Keeling, C. I., Young, S., Blomquist, G., Tittiger, C. 2009, . Isolation, endocrine regulation and transcript distribution of a putative primary JH-response gene from the pine engraver, Ips pini Coleoptera: Scolytidae, Insect Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 38, 256-267.
  • Sandstrom, P., Ginzel, M. D., Bearfield, J. C., Blomquist, G., Tittiger, C., Welch, W. H 2009, Myrcene hydroxyases do not determine enantiomeric composition of pheromonal ipsdienol in Ips spp., Journal of Chemical Ecology, 34, 1584-1592
  • Blomquist GJ and Vogt RG. Editors, "Insect Pheromone Biochemistry and Molecular Biology”, Elsevier Academic Press, London 745 pages (2003).
  • Hall GM, Tittiger C, Andrews G, Mastick G, Kuenzli M, Luo X, Seybold SJ and Blomquist GJ. Male pine engraver Beetles, Ips pini, synthesize the monoterpenoid pheromone ipsdienol de novo in midgut tissue. Naturwissenschaften 89, 79-83 (2002).
  • Barkawi LS, Francke W, Blomquist GJ and Seybold SJ. Frontalin: De novo biosynthesis of an aggregation pheromone component by Dendroctonus spp. bark beetles (Coleoptera: Scolytidae). Insect Biochem. Molec. Biol. 33, 773-788 (2003).
  • Blomquist GJ. Ecdysteroid regulation of pheromone production in the housefly, Musca domestica. In "Insect Pheromone Biochemistry and Molecular Biology”, eds. G.J. Blomquist and R. G. Vogt, Academic Press, pp. 231-252 (2003).
  • G.J. Blomquist and R. Vogt, Editors, "Insect Pheromones: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology”, Academic Press (2002) To purchase this text, visit
  • S. Mpuru, G.J. Blomquist, C. Schal, M. Kuenzli, G. Dusticier, M. Roux and A.-G. Bagneres. Effect of age and sex on the production of internal and external hydrocarbons and pheromones in the housefly, Musca domestica. Insect Biochem. Molec. Biol. 31 139-155 (2001). D. Liang, G.J. Blomquist and J. Silverman. Hydrocarbon-induced nestmate aggression in the Argentine ant, Linepithema humile, following encounter with insect prey. Comp. Biochem. and Physiol. 129B:871-882 (2001).
  • P. Juarez, G.J. Blomquist and C.J. Schofield. Hydrocarbons of Rhodnius prolixus, a Chagas disease vector. Comp. Biochem. Physiol. 129B:733-746 (2001).
  • C. Schal, V. Sevala, M. De L. Capurro, T. Snyder, G.J. Blomquist, A.-G. Bagnères. Tissue distribution and lipophorin transport of hydrocarbons and sex pheromones in the house fly, Musca domestica. J. Insect Science 1:12 (11 pages) (2001).
  • V. Sevala, A.-G. Bagnêres, M. Kuenzli, G.J. Blomquist, C Schal. Cuticular hydrocarbons of the dampwood termite, Zootermopsis nevadensis : Caste differences and role of lipophorin in transport of hydrocarbon and hydrocarbon metabolites. J. Chem. Ecol. 26:765-789 (2000).
  • C. Tittiger, C. O’Keeffe, C.S. Bengoa, L. Barkawi, S.J. Seybold and G.J. Blomquist. Isolation and endocrine regulation of HMG-CoA synthase cDNA from the male Jeffrey pine beetle, Dendroctonus jeffreyi. Insect Biochem. Molec. Biol. 30:1203-1211 (2000).
  • J.P. Batcabe, J.D. Howell, G.J. Blomquist and C.E. Borgeson. Effects of age, ambient temperature and dietary alterations on the delta-12 desaturase activity in the house cricket, Acheta domesticus. Arch. Insect Biochem. Physiol. 44:112-119 (2000).

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