Wednesday, January 20th, 2021

US To Release GM Mosquitoes In America Despite Zika Concerns

Published on March 13, 2016 by   ·   1 Comment

US to released genetically modified (GM) mosquitoes across America


The United States government have announced plans to introduce GM mosquitoes in Florida in an attempt to thwart the spread of the dengue and chikungunya virus. 

Some experts have slammed the plans, calling them “irresponsible”, amid mounting evidence that a similar batch of mosquitoes released in Brazil in 2015 caused the outbreak of the deadly Zika virus. reports:

The US Food and Drug Administration issued a “preliminary finding” that the genetically modified insects, produced byOxitec at its labs in Oxford, England, and shipped as eggs to Florida, would have essentially “no significant impact” on human health, animal health, or the ecosystem. The public can submit comments on that conclusion for the next 30 days.

Entomologist Phil Lounibos of the University of Florida, who has followed Oxitec’s proposal for years, said he was “not too surprised” by the agency’s conclusion. “FDA had dawdled for too long on this decision but Zika’s arrival helped to expedite Oxitec’s case.”

Oxitec’s Aedes aegypti mosquitoes have been genetically engineered to carry two foreign genes. One makes them die if they are not exposed to the antibiotic tetracycline (as would be the case anywhere outside a lab). The other makes them glow red. All of the released mosquitoes would be male, and when they mate with native females their offspring would also die without tetracycline while they are still larvae or pupae.

The field test Oxitec wants to run — in Key Haven, Fla. — would assess whether that actually happens and estimate how much the overall aegypti population is suppressed at the trial site compared with a control area. At the end of the trial, the genetically modified mosquitoes would die when they reach their natural lifespan (about two days), and natural aegypti “levels are expected to recover to pre-trial numbers,” the FDA concluded.

Read More HERE

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Readers Comments (1)

  1. Gary Costa Gary Costa says:

    The pharmaceutical industry will have a treatment, but not a cure.

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