Taxonomy and Molecular Analysis (through RAPD-PCR) of Moths (Lepidoptera) of Cold Deserts (Spiti & Leh) of Indian Himalayas” under DST Young Scientist – Fast Track Scheme. (EAP).
Principal Investigator: Dr. Pawan Kumar, Scientist-C
Duration: 2012-15

1. Survey and collection of moths (Lepidoptera) form Indian cold deserts (Leh and Spiti).
2. Identification, characterization and taxonomic study (morphology, wing venation and genitalia) of the identified moths.
3. Molecular analysis of economically important and morphologically confusing (virtually identical) moth's species through RAPD-PCR.

• Molecular techniques to characterize the insect species has been introduced which is a new field for taxonomic study of insect species.
• Molecular characterization through RAPD-PCR of moths (Lepidoptera) of cold deserts has been started and moth specimens have been collected from cold deserts (Leh & spit) of Indian Himalayas.
• Total of 170 specimens of moth (Lepidoptera) species has been collected from various localities of cold deserts of Leh and Spiti. 10 species of has been identified i. e. Agrois ypsilon, G. operculella, Y. rorella, S. litura Plusia orechalsea, Diamond back moth, Polyphaenis confecta , Helicoverpa armigera, Xestia C-nigrum, Ochropleuravallesioca
• All the above species have been identified taxonomically and for the first time comparison data of the genetic variance has been established through RAPD –PCR in the project ‘Taxonomy and molecular analysis (through RAPD-PCR) of moths (Lepidoptera) of Cold Deserts (Spiti and Leh) of Indian Himalayas’ funded under SERC Fast Track proposal for
• Young Scientists Scheme, by DST, Govt. of India, New-Delhi. RAPD-PCR methodology for analysis of moths has been standardized and protocol has been developed which will help in easy PCR product formation.
• Random primers have been selected for the study and primers OLA-6 and Primer OLA-7 are giving promosing results.