Benjamin Deist

Graduate Assistant-Research
Benjamin Deist photo

My work involves modification of the Bt toxin Cry4Aa-S1 to increase toxicity against the soybean aphid for potential use in genetically modified soybean.  I am working to increase the binding of Cry4Aa-S1 to the soybean aphid gut by incorporating soybean aphid gut binding peptides into Cry4Aa-S1.  The rationale behind my project is that there is typically a correlation between toxin binding to the insect gut epithelium and toxicity, and that if binding of the toxin to the gut epithelium can be increased, a similar increase in toxicity should be observed.

Area of Expertise: 
B.S. Biology with a minor in Chemistry, University of Wisconsin at Platteville