Self-deleting genes to be tested as part of mosquito population control concept

B. Hays,  UPI,  2020.

Scientists at Texas A&M have developed a new technique for altering the genes of mosquitoes — the new technology will cause genetic changes to self-delete from the mosquitoes’ genome. Thanks to the breakthrough, described Monday in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, researchers can now test-run experimental gene edits without permanently altering a mosquito’s genome.”People are wary of transgenes spreading in the environment in an uncontrolled manner. We feel that ours is a strategy to potentially prevent that from happening,” Zach Adelman, professor of entomology at the Texas A&M College of Agriculture, said in a news release. “The idea is, can we program a transgene to remove itself? Then, the gene won’t persist in the environment.”

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Self-deleting genes tested as part of the concept of mosquito population control