Genetic biocontrol is an approach for controlling or eliminating specific organisms that threaten public health, food security and biodiversity that uses genetic variants (natural, induced or transgenic) of the target species as the controlling agents to affect the target species in ways that reduce its undesirable impacts. Robust transgenic and genome editing technologies are fueling expanding research and development of genetic platforms and systems for combating pathogen and parasite-transmitting mosquitoes, plants and insects that reduce food security, and invasive species that are destroying biodiversity.
This unique convening will focus exclusively on the topic of genetic biocontrol and will serve to foster community-building and consequently encourage cooperation, collaboration, communication, and new and exciting science at a time when new technologies such as gene drive and Wolbachia-induced cytoplasmic incompatibility are being developed. This meeting will bring together researchers investigating genetic systems with potential applications to genetic biocontrol with technology developers and those implementing genetic biocontrol strategies to share knowledge, foster new research, compare lessons-learned and develop best practices. This conference will feature discovery research along with technology development and ongoing operational experiences of those moving existing technologies to the field. The meeting will be biological system-agnostic and will bring those working on insects, plants, fish, mammals, and other organisms together. This is an opportune time to bring researchers, developers, and practitioners together so that future genetic biocontrol activities will take place within a community with shared interests and values.