Mosquito-borne diseases: time to change minds on GM
Special report: Through genetic engineering a gene can be inserted into a strain of mosquitoes that prevents the survival of the next generation – and with Europe seeing an invasion of new disease-carrying insects, it is time to have a more refined debate on GM, says Oxitec chief executive
Over the past few years Europe has witnessed the start of an invasion of new disease-carrying mosquitoes. It is often argued that a gradually warming climate creates a suitable environment for these mosquitoes to infest parts of Europe that hitherto would not support them. Certainly a changing climate may be one of the factors that is leading to the establishment of these vectors but while the reasons for the increase are being researched and understood, perhaps the more important question is: how do we control them?