Gene Drive Basics


A short explanation with a basic instructional video illustrating the genetics involved.
2020/by Academic Web Pages

How do you make a gene drive mosquito?

A short video
2020/by David Obrochta


Two articles on the ethical dimensions of researching and using gene drive technologies
2020/by Academic Web Pages

What are gene drives, and how can they help eradicate invasive species in Australia?

The impact of feral cats and other invasive species is felt across Australia. Not only do they threaten native species, but they can also spread diseases to humans and livestock. Invasive species are estimated to cost Australia an eye-watering $25 billion annually, while the global cost is a staggering $423 billion. Feral cats are everywhere — the nation is home to up to 6.3 million of them, and they are responsible for killing millions of native mammals, reptiles, and birds each day.

Minister for the Environment and Water Tanya Plibersek recently declared "war on feral cats", announcing plans involving cat curfews, desexing regulations, and caps on cat numbers in homes. But what can we do about the millions of feral cats already wreaking havoc across Australia? And what about other pests such as foxes, rabbits, cane toads, carp, pigs, deer, or goats? One technique with the potential to help fight not just cats but all invasive species is called a "gene drive".

Improving Public Health

by Eliminating Malaria and Dengue Fever
2020/by David Obrochta

Genetic technologies enable the creation of transgenes that display gene drive.
2020/by Academic Web Pages


Two documents about gene drive technologies and their potential applications from two prestigious scientific societies.
2020/by Academic Web Pages

What is Genetic Biocontrol?

An overview placing gene drive technologies in a broader context
2020/by David Obrochta


Five videos on gene drive technology and biosafety, regulation, policy, governance, and ethics issues
2020/by Academic Web Pages

Increasing Food Security

by Reducing Crop Loss by Insects
2020/by Academic Web Pages

Types of Gene Drive

Not all gene drives are the same. Here are some examples with explanations.
2020/by David Obrochta

Inside Gates Foundation’s $15M effort to release gene-hacked mosquitoes that end malaria with ‘killer sex’

Malaria is a mosquito-borne disease caused by parasites and poses a significant threat to nearly half of the world's population. In 2021, an estimated 247 million people contracted malaria, with a staggering 619,000 deaths, per Imperial College. Most of those deaths affected children under five in sub-Saharan Africa.

Because current methods for fighting malaria are falling short, innovative approaches are required – enter Transmission Zero. The program's end goal is to genetically modify specific mosquito species to make them incapable of transmitting the disease. The way this works is that the gene-modified mosquitoes get sent out into the world to breed with wild mosquitoes. The result is a new generation of mosquitoes that are born with an antimalarial modification.


This infographic published by the Entomological Society of America illustrates the mechanics of Gene Drive.
2020/by Academic Web Pages

New Techniques of Genetic Modification in Pest Control Spark Debate in Canada

Scientists in Canada are urging serious discussions on the use of genetic modification as a new technique in pest control. In a recent report by the Pest Management Regulatory Agency, a branch of Health Canada that regulates pesticide use, experts argue that genetic modification could become a powerful tool as older insecticides lose their effectiveness and climate change leads to new infestations.

Already, such techniques are being tested to prevent mosquitoes from spreading malaria. However, the authors of the report caution that there are many unknown variables. They claim that the consequences of releasing synthetic versions of natural organisms could be harmful and permanent.

Conserving BioDiversity

by Controlling Invasive Species
2020/by Academic Web Pages