Risk, Regulation, and Policy

Risk assessments, regulation of gene drive, and thought leadership on gene drive policy

Bayesian network-based risk assessment of synthetic biology: Simulating CRISPR-Cas9 gene drive dynamics in invasive rodent management

E. A. Brown, S. R. Eikenbary and W. G. Landis,  Risk Analysis,  2022.
Gene drive technology has been proposed to control invasive rodent populations as an alternative to rodenticides. However, this approach has not undergone risk assessment that meets criteria established by Gene Drives on the Horizon, a 2016 report by the National Academies of ...
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Prescribing engagement in environmental risk assessment for gene drive technology

S. Hartley, A. Kokotovich and C. McCalman,  Regulation and Governance,  2022.
Abstract Gene drive technology is a nascent biotechnology with the potential to purposefully alter or eliminate a species. There have been broad calls for engagement to inform gene drive governance. Over the past seven years, the gene drive community has been developing risk ...
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Opening up, closing down, or leaving ajar? How applications are used in engaging with publics about gene drive

A. W. Russell, A. Stelmach, S. Hartley, L. Carter and S. Raman,  Journal of Responsible Innovation,  2022.
Public engagement and responsible innovation are strongly emphasised in gene drive research, together with the goal of addressing societal challenges, notably, malaria and environmental conservation. We aim to explore whether public engagement is used to ‘open up' or ‘close ...
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Could species-focused suppression of Aedes aegypti, the yellow fever mosquito, and Aedes albopictus, the tiger mosquito, affect interacting predators? An evidence synthesis from the literature

J. A. S. Bonds, C. M. Collins and L.-C. Gouagna,  Pest Management Science,  2022.
The risks of Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus nuisance and vector-borne diseases are rising and the adverse effects of broad-spectrum insecticide application has promoted species-specific techniques, such as sterile insect technique (SIT) and other genetic strategies, as ...
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Regulation of genetically engineered (GE) mosquitoes as a public health tool: a public health ethics analysis

Z. Meghani,  Globalization and Health,  18:21. 2022.
In recent years, genetically engineered (GE) mosquitoes have been proposed as a public health measure against the high incidence of mosquito-borne diseases among the poor in regions of the global South. While uncertainties as well as risks for humans and ecosystems are entailed ...
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An Ethical Overview of the CRISPR-Based Elimination of Anopheles gambiae to Combat Malaria

I. J. Wise and P. Borry,  Journal of Bioethical Inquiry,  2022.
Approximately a quarter of a billion people around the world suffer from malaria each year. Most cases are located in sub-Saharan Africa where Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes are the principal vectors of this public health problem. With the use of CRISPR-based gene drives, the ...
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A Closing Window of Opportunity for Gene Drive Governance in the United States

K. L. Warmbrod, M. Montague and G. K. Gronvall,  Health Security,  20:3-5. 2022.
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought forth a number of biotechnological advances to enhance the public's health: new diagnostic tests, mRNA vaccines, and new antiviral medications. Biotechnology is also being used to address global challenges like climate change, food insecurity, ...
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Conditions for Investment in Genetic Biocontrol of Pest Vertebrates in Australia

L. Carter, A. Mankad, S. Campbell, W. Ruscoe, K. P. Oh, P. R. Brown, M. Byrne, M. Tizard and T. Strive,  Frontiers in Agronomy,  3. 2022.
Managing pest vertebrate species in Australia is a significant challenge for government, industry, research sectors and land-managers. Innovative tools such as genetic biocontrol offers decision-makers a potentially effective means of reducing the impact of pest species ...
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Gene Drives in the U.K., U.S., and Australian Press (2015–2019): How a New Focus on Responsibility Is Shaping Science Communication

A. Stelmach, B. Nerlich and S. Hartley,  Science Communication,  10755470211072245. 2022.
Gene drive is a controversial biotechnology for pest control. Despite a commitment from gene drive researchers to responsibility and the key role of the media in debates about science and technology, little research has been conducted on media reporting of gene drive. We employ ...
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Insect Allies – Assessment of a Viral Approach to Plant Genome Editing

K. Pfeifer, J. L. Frieß and B. Giese,  Integrated Environmental Assessment and Management,  2022.
The DARPA program Insect Allies has already sparked scientific debate concerning technology assessment-related issues, among which the most prevalent is that of dual use potential. As apart from the issues concerning peaceful applications, the technology also provides the ...
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iGEM and Gene Drives: A Case Study for Governance

P. Millett, T. Alexanian, M. J. Palmer, S. W. Evans, T. Kuiken and K. Oye,  Health Security,  2022.
Gene drives have already challenged governance systems. In this case study, we explore the International Genetically Engineered Machine (iGEM) competition's experiences in gene drive-related research and lessons in developing, revising, and implementing a governance system. ...
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The Need for a Tiered Registry for US Gene Drive Governance

K. L. Warmbrod, A. L. Kobokovich, R. West, G. K. Gronvall and M. Montague,  Health Security,  2022.
A great deal of attention has been focused on the potential risks of gene drives, the kinds of biosafety protections they may require, and how they may be reversed; however, less attention has been paid to the systems that would be useful to have in place in the future, when ...
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An Introduction to Containment Recommendations for Gene Drive Mosquitoes and the Laboratory Rearing of Genetically Engineered Mosquitoes in Africa

S. Higgs,  Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases,  2022.
The prospect of using genetically engineered arthropods to reduce the incidence of vector-borne diseases either indirectly by suppressing vector populations or directly by replacing wild-type vector species with less competent ones has long been discussed; however, only in the ...
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Preparing an Insectary in Burkina Faso to Support Research in Genetic Technologies for Malaria Control

C. Guissou, M. M. Quinlan, R. Sanou, R. K. Ouédraogo, M. Namountougou and A. Diabaté,  Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases,  2022.
The Institut de Recherche en Sciences de la Santé (IRSS) of Burkina Faso, West Africa, was the first African institution to import transgenic mosquitoes for research purposes. A shift from the culture of mosquito research to regulated biotechnology research and considerable ...
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Information Sharing in Senegal on the Gene Drive Technology as a potential Complementary Tool for Malaria Vector Control

AUDA-NEPAD in partnership with the National Biosafety Authority (Autorité Nationale de Biosécurité (ANB) in Senegal organized an Information sharing meeting on the gene drive technology as a complementary tool for malaria vector control, from 22-23 December 2021, in Somone, ...
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Stakeholder Views on Engagement, Trust, Performance, and Risk Considerations About Use of Gene Drive Technology in Agricultural Pest Management

C. L. Goldsmith, K. E. Kang, E. Heitman, Z. N. Adelman, L. W. Buchman, D. Kerns, X. Liu, R. F. Medina and A. Vedlitz,  Health Security,  2021.
Gene drive is an experimental technique that may make it possible to alter the genetic traits of whole populations of a species through the genetic modification of a relatively small number of individuals. This technology is sufficiently new that literature on the understanding ...
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Facilitating the Conversation: Gene Drive Classification

J. Overcash and A. Golnar,  Health Security,  2021.
Gene drives are an emerging technology with tremendous potential to impact public health, agriculture, and conservation. While gene drives can be described simply as selfish genetic elements (natural or engineered) that are inherited at non-Mendelian rates, upon closer ...
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Integrated Management of Malaria Vectors in Africa

R. Mbabazi, K. Maredia, B. B. El-Sayed, A. K. Babumba, M. Savadogo and O. Akinbo,  Genetically Modified and other Innovative Vector Control Technologies,  2021.
Malaria disease is a major public health burden in Africa. The control of malaria vectors is a critical component for prevention, management, and eradication of malaria disease. This chapter presents information on the current status of malaria vector control in Africa with ...
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Laboratory Biosafety in Handling Genetically Modified Mosquitoes

J. Charles,  Genetically Modified and other Innovative Vector Control Technologies,  2021.
One of the novel approaches in controlling vector-borne diseases is to release genetically modified mosquitoes in nature. Trial studies are done in different phases by the researches, both in the laboratory and in the fields. Before a GM mosquito is validated to be ready for ...
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Safety Assessment of Novel Genetic Technologies for Vector Control: National and International Perspectives

V. Ahuja,  Genetically Modified and other Innovative Vector Control Technologies,  2021.
Novel genetic technologies provide an alternative approach for control of vectors particularly those carrying deadly pathogens. Genetic control technologies aim to either suppress target populations or modify the vector by introducing a heritable factor that reduces or blocks ...
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