Gene Drive Systems To Control Aedes Aegypti Mosquitoes Make Headway

Joshua Ang,  Outreach Network for Gene Drive Research,  2024.

Aedes aegypti mosquitoes are known vectors of several diseases, including dengue, chikungunya, yellow fever, and Zika, which impact millions of people worldwide each year. The effectiveness of existing insecticide-based methods to control this mosquito is threatened by growing insecticide resistance, underscoring the need to develop new approaches. The advent of CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing has reshaped the research and development landscape of new potential vector control tools, leading researchers to explore novel approaches, such as gene drive technologies.

In the past few years, gene drive technologies have gained remarkable traction, particularly for their success in controlling major malaria mosquito vectors in laboratory settings. A gene drive is able to bias its own inheritance, facilitating the spread of a specific trait through a target population. This super-Mendelian pattern of propagation makes gene drive technology an efficient and cost-effective potential new method to control mosquitoes that transmit disease.

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