Gene drive: Evolved and synthetic

Burt, AC, Andrea,  ACS Chemical Biology,  13:343-346. 2018.

Drive is a process of accelerated inheritance from one generation to the next that allows some genes to spread rapidly through populations even if they do not contribute to—or indeed even if they detract from—organismal survival and reproduction. Genetic elements that can spread by drive include gametic and zygotic killers, meiotic drivers, homing endonuclease genes, B chromosomes, and transposable elements. The fact that gene drive can lead to the spread of fitness-reducing traits (including lethality and sterility) makes it an attractive process to consider exploiting to control disease vectors and other pests. There are a number of efforts to develop synthetic gene drive systems, particularly focused on the mosquito-borne diseases that continue to plague us.