Keywords: population modification

Curing mosquitoes with genetic approaches for malaria control

Mary Kefi, Victor Cardoso-Jaime, Sally A. Saab, George Dimopoulos,  Trends in Parasitology,  2024.
Malaria remains a persistent global public health challenge because of the limitations of current prevention tools. The use of transgenic mosquitoes incapable of transmitting malaria, in conjunction with existing methods, holds promise for achieving elimination of malaria and ...
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A homing rescue gene drive with multiplexed gRNAs reaches high frequency in cage populations but generates functional resistance

Hou S, Chen J, Feng R, Xu X, Liang N, Champer J.,  Journal of Genetics and Genomics,  2024.
CRISPR homing gene drive is a potent technology with considerable potential for managing populations of medically and agriculturally significant insects. It induces a bias in the inheritance of the drive allele in progeny, rapidly spreading the desired gene construct throughout ...
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Manipulating the Destiny of Wild Populations Using CRISPR

Raban R, Marshall JM, Hay BA, Akbari OS.,  Annual Reviews,  57:361-390. 2023.
Genetic biocontrol aims to suppress or modify populations of species to protect public health, agriculture, and biodiversity. Advancements in genome engineering technologies have fueled a surge in research in this field, with one gene editing technology, CRISPR, leading the ...
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Dengue rates drop after release of modified mosquitoes in Colombia

M. Lenharo,  Nature,  2023.
Three cities in Colombia saw a dramatic fall in the incidence of dengue in the years following the introduction of mosquitoes carrying Wolbachia, a bacterium that prevents the insect from transmitting viruses. In neighbourhoods where the Wolbachia mosquitoes were well ...
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Conceptual risk assessment of mosquito population modification gene-drive systems to control malaria transmission: preliminary hazards list workshops

A. Kormos, G. Dimopoulos, E. Bier, G. C. Lanzaro, J. M. Marshall and A. A. James,  Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology,  11. 2023.
The field-testing and eventual adoption of genetically-engineered mosquitoes (GEMs) to control vector-borne pathogen transmission will require them meeting safety criteria specified by regulatory authorities in regions where the technology is being considered for use and other ...
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The double-edged sword effect of expanding Wolbachia deployment in dengue endemic settings

M. G. Pavan, G. A. Garcia, M. R. David and R. Maciel-de-Freitas,  The Lancet Regional Health - Americas,  27:100610. 2023.
We can use Brazil as a showcase to foresee and avoid a double-edged sword effect associated with Wolbachia releases. Insecticide resistance of native Ae. aegypti populations is spread worldwide (http://aedes.irmapper.com), and positive results should boost Wolbachia deployment in ...
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Wolbachia-mediated resistance to Zika virus infection in Aedes aegypti is dominated by diverse transcriptional regulation and weak evolutionary pressures

E. C. Boehm, A. S. Jaeger, H. J. Ries, D. Castañeda, A. M. Weiler, C. C. Valencia, J. Weger-Lucarelli, G. D. Ebel, S. L. O’Connor, T. C. Friedrich, M. Zamanian and M. T. Aliota,  PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases,  17:e0011674. 2023.
A promising candidate for arbovirus control and prevention relies on replacing arbovirus-susceptible Aedes aegypti populations with mosquitoes that have been colonized by the intracellular bacterium Wolbachia and thus have a reduced capacity to transmit arboviruses. This reduced ...
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Unleashing a New Weapon on the Mosquito: A Mosquito

S. Nolen and E. Lutz,  New York Times,  2023.
Five decades ago, entomologists confronting the many kinds of suffering that mosquitoes inflict on humans began to consider a new idea: What if, instead of killing the mosquitoes (a losing proposition in most places), you could disarm them? Even if you couldn’t keep them from ...
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The Gamble: Can Genetically Modified Mosquitoes End Disease?

S. Nolen,  New York Times,  2023.
The malaria situation in São Tomé and Príncipe, an African island nation with a population of 200,000, epitomizes the current challenge in the global struggle against the disease. The country is among the world’s least developed, and it has depended on foreign aid to fight ...
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Using Wolbachia to control rice planthopper populations: progress and challenges

Y. Guo, J. Shao, Y. Wu and Y. Li,  Frontiers in Microbiology,  14. 2023.
Wolbachia have been developed as a tool for protecting humans from mosquito populations and mosquito-borne diseases. The success of using Wolbachia relies on the facts that Wolbachia are maternally transmitted and that Wolbachia-induced cytoplasmic incompatibility provides a ...
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Measuring the Impact of Genetic Heterogeneity and Chromosomal Inversions on the Efficacy of CRISPR-Cas9 Gene Drives in Different Strains of Anopheles gambiae

Pescod, Poppy Bevivino, Giulia Anthousi, Amalia Shelton, Ruth Shepherd, Josephine Lombardo, Fabrizio Nolan, Tony,  The CRISPR Journal,  2023.
The human malaria vector Anopheles gambiae is becoming increasingly resistant to insecticides, spurring the development of genetic control strategies. CRISPR-Cas9 gene drives can modify a population by creating double-stranded breaks at highly specific targets, triggering copying ...
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Quantifying the impact of Wolbachia releases on dengue infection in Townsville, Australia

Ogunlade, S. T. Adekunle, A. I. Meehan, M. T. McBryde, E. S.,  Scientific Reports,  13:14932. 2023.
From October 2014 to February 2019, local authorities in Townsville, North Queensland, Australia continually introduced Wolbachia-infected mosquitoes to control seasonal outbreaks of dengue infection. In this study, we develop a mathematical modelling framework to estimate the ...
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Molecular Evidence of Wolbachia Species in Wild-Caught Aedes albopictus and Aedes aegypti Mosquitoes in Four States of Northeast India

Vinayagam, S. Nirmolia, T. Chetry, S. Kumar, N. P. Saini, P. Bhattacharyya, D. R. Bhowmick, I. P. Sattu, K. Patgiri, S. J.,  Journal of Tropical Medicine,  2023.
Wolbachia, a Gram-negative intracellular bacterium, naturally infects many arthropods, including mosquito vectors responsible for the spread of arboviral diseases such as Zika, chikungunya, and dengue fever. Certain Wolbachia strains are involved in inhibiting arbovirus ...
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Does ignoring transmission dynamics lead to underestimation of the impact of interventions against mosquito-borne disease?

S. Cavany, J. Huber, H. , A. Wieler, Q. M. Tran, M. Alkuzweny, M. Elliott, G. España, S. Moore, M. and T. A. Perkins,  BMJ Global Health,  8:e012169. 2023.
New vector-control technologies to fight mosquito-borne diseases are urgently needed, the adoption of which depends on efficacy estimates from large-scale cluster-randomised trials (CRTs). The release of Wolbachia-infected mosquitoes is one promising strategy to curb dengue virus ...
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Wolbachia wMel strain-mediated effects on dengue virus vertical transmission from Aedes aegypti to their offspring

K. Duong Thi Hue, D. da Silva Goncalves, V. Tran Thuy, L. Thi Vo, D. Le Thi, N. Vu Tuyet, G. Nguyen Thi, T. Huynh Thi Xuan, N. Nguyen Minh, P. Nguyen Thanh, S. Yacoub and C. P. Simmons,  Parasites and Vectors,  16:308. 2023.
Background Dengue virus serotypes (DENV-1 to -4) can be transmitted vertically in Aedes aegpti mosquitoes. Whether infection with the wMel strain of the endosymbiont Wolbachia can reduce the incidence of vertical transmission of DENV from infected females to their offspring is ...
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The impact of predators of mosquito larvae on Wolbachia spreading dynamics

Z. Zhu, Y. Hui and L. Hu,  Journal of Biological Dynamics,  17:2249024. 2023.
Dengue fever creates more than 390 million cases worldwide yearly. The most effective way to deal with this mosquito-borne disease is to control the vectors. In this work we consider two weapons, the endosymbiotic bacteria Wolbachia and predators of mosquito larvae, for combating ...
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Modeling shows emerging mosquito control approach might be largely resistant to warming temperatures

B. Yirka,  Phys Org,  2023.
A team of epidemiologists and engineers at the University of California, working with a colleague from QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute, in Australia, has found via modeling that the use of the Wolbachia approach to slowing the spread of mosquito-borne diseases (MBDs) is ...
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Scientists are releasing disease-resistant mosquitoes. But heat waves could kill them.

C. Harvey,  Politico,  2023.
A new study, published Thursday in the journal Nature Climate Change, suggests that the disease-quashing bugs will likely survive for at least the next couple of decades. Their fate is less certain further into the future. The study focuses on a special insect-borne bacterium ...
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wMel replacement of dengue-competent mosquitoes is robust to near-term change

V. N. Vásquez, L. M. Kueppers, G. Rašić and J. M. Marshall,  Nature Climate Change,  13:848-855. 2023.
Rising temperatures are impacting the range and prevalence of mosquito-borne diseases. A promising biocontrol technology replaces wild mosquitoes with those carrying the virus-blocking Wolbachia bacterium. Because the most widely used strain, wMel, is adversely affected by heat ...
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Susceptibility of Wolbachia mosquito control to temperature shifts

E. P. Caragata,  Nature Climate Change,  13:767-768. 2023.
Vásquez and colleagues consider the potential impacts of increasing and variable temperatures on Wolbachia-based population-replacement interventions. Previous laboratory experiments have highlighted the temperature-sensitive nature of Wolbachia, with high average daily ...
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Lab-grown special mosquitoes can be the secret weapon to fight dengue

M. Jain,  MONGABAY,  2023.
The World Mosquito Program infects the Aedes aegypti, which carries the dengue virus, with a bacteria called Wolbachia, which reduces the transmission of dengue. Dengue infections are rapidly increasing because of factors like urbanisation and climate change. The World Health ...
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Mosquitoes spread malaria. These researchers want them to fight it instead

G. Brumfiel,  NPR,  2023.
Mosquitoes carry malaria, which kills hundreds of thousands of people each year. Now some researchers are trying to use genetic engineering to make the pesky insects into allies in the fight against the disease. The approach is a radical departure from traditional ways of ...
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Mosquito-friendly gene drive may lead to a malaria-free future

Anonymous,  LIFE TECHNOLOGY,  2023.
A gene drive is a genetic mechanism that allows a particular gene to spread rapidly through a population. In the case of malaria, scientists are working on developing a gene drive that would make mosquitoes resistant to the parasite that causes the disease. This would reduce the ...
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Dual effector population modification gene-drive strains of the African malaria mosquitoes, Anopheles gambiae and Anopheles coluzzii

R. Carballar-Lejarazú, Y. Dong, T. B. Pham, T. Tushar, R. M. Corder, A. Mondal, H. M. Sánchez C, H.-F. Lee, J. M. Marshall, G. Dimopoulos and A. A. James,  Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences,  120:e2221118120. 2023.
Proposed genetic approaches for reducing human malaria include population modification, which introduces genes into vector mosquitoes to reduce or prevent parasite transmission. We demonstrate the potential of Cas9/guide RNA (gRNA)?based gene-drive systems linked to dual ...
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Mosquitoes made immune to malaria could help stamp out the disease

C. Wilson,  NewScientist,  2023.
Mosquitoes have been gene edited so they are immune to the parasites that cause malaria. If released into the wild, the genetic modification should spread through a population of mosquitoes because it contains a sequence known as a “gene drive”, which means all the modified ...
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The cellular lives of Wolbachia

J. Porter and W. Sullivan,  Nature Reviews Microbiology,  2023.
Wolbachia are successful Gram-negative bacterial endosymbionts, globally infecting a large fraction of arthropod species and filarial nematodes. Efficient vertical transmission, the capacity for horizontal transmission, manipulation of host reproduction and enhancement of host ...
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MGSurvE: A framework to optimize trap placement for genetic surveillance of mosquito population

C. H. Sánchez, D. L. Smith and J. M. Marshall,  bioRxiv,  2023.
Genetic surveillance of mosquito populations is becoming increasingly relevant as genetics-based mosquito control strategies advance from laboratory to field testing. Especially applicable are mosquito gene drive projects, the potential scale of which leads monitoring to be a ...
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Generation game: gene-edited mosquitos to fight malaria

J. Opara,  Sci Dev Net,  2023.
Population-level changes in the genetic make-up of one of the world’s deadliest animals could provide a key in the fight against malaria, proponents of a radical new technology argue. So-called gene drive technology, where genetic changes are passed down through generations, ...
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Mosquito gene targeted RNAi studies for vector control

M. Yadav, N. Dahiya and N. Sehrawat,  Functional and Integrative Genomics,  23:180. 2023.
Vector-borne diseases are serious public health concern. Mosquito is one of the major vectors responsible for the transmission of a number of diseases like malaria, Zika, chikungunya, dengue, West Nile fever, Japanese encephalitis, St. Louis encephalitis, and yellow fever. ...
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The boundary problem: Defining and delineating the community in field trials with gene drive organisms

N. de Graeff, I. Pirson, R. van der Graaf, A. L. Bredenoord and K. R. Jongsma,  Bioethics,  2023.
Despite widespread and worldwide efforts to eradicate vector-borne diseases such as malaria, these diseases continue to have an enormous negative impact on public health. For this reason, scientists are working on novel control strategies, such as gene drive technologies (GDTs). ...
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Mathematical modeling of the performance of wild and transgenic mosquitoes in malaria transmission

A. P. Wyse, A. J. B. dos Santos, J. D. Azevedo, A. C. de Meneses and V. M. D. Santos,  Plos One,  18:23. 2023.
A mathematical model that simulates malaria transmission under the influence of transgenic mosquitoes refractory to malaria is presented in this paper. The zygosity of transgenic mosquitoes is taken into account and, consequently, the total population of mosquitoes is comprised ...
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Massive mosquito factory in Brazil aims to halt dengue

M. Lenharo,  Nature,  2023.
The non-profit World Mosquito Program (WMP) has announced that it will release modified mosquitoes in many of Brazil’s urban areas over the next 10 years, with the aim of protecting up to 70 million people from diseases such as dengue. Researchers have tested the release of ...
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Modelling the effect of migration on the localisation and spread of a gene drive

C. Benjamin James and F.-L. Alexandre Jules Hen,  bioRxiv,  2023.04.02.535303. 2023.
Gene drives have the potential to address pressing ecological issues. Through the super-Mendelian inheritance of a gene drive, a trait can be spread through a population even in spite of a fitness cost. This ability to spread is both its greatest quality and detractor. We may not ...
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First transgenic mosquito made in Africa by Transmission Zero

H. Dunning,  Imperial College London,  2023.
Transmission Zero, a global scientific programme led by scientists at Imperial College London and the Ifakara Health Institute (IHI) of Tanzania, in partnership with the Tanzanian National Institute of Medical Research (NIMR), announces the generation of the first transgenic ...
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Modelling the effect of migration on the localisation and spread of a gene drive

C. Benjamin and F.-L. Alexandre,  bioRxiv,  2023.
Gene drives have the potential to address pressing ecological issues. Through the super-Mendelian inheritance of a gene drive, a trait can be spread through a population even in spite of a fitness cost. This ability to spread is both its greatest quality and detractor. We may not ...
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The Promise and Challenge of Genetic Biocontrol Approaches for Malaria Elimination

S. James and M. Santos,  Tropical Medicine and Infectious Disease,  2023.
Malaria remains an ongoing public health challenge, with over 600,000 deaths in 2021, of which approximately 96% occurred in Africa. Despite concerted efforts, the goal of global malaria elimination has stalled in recent years. This has resulted in widespread calls for new ...
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Enhancing the scalability of Wolbachia-based vector-borne disease management: time and temperature limits for storage and transport of Wolbachia-infected Aedes aegypti eggs for field releases

M. J. Allman, Y. H. Lin, D. A. Joubert, J. Addley-Cook, M. C. Mejía-Torres, C. P. Simmons, H. A. Flores and J. E. Fraser,  Parasit Vectors,  16:108. 2023.
BACKGROUND: Introgression of the bacterial endosymbiont Wolbachia into Aedes aegypti populations is a biocontrol approach being used to reduce arbovirus transmission. This requires mass release of Wolbachia-infected mosquitoes. While releases have been conducted using a variety ...
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Genome evolution of dengue virus serotype 1 under selection by Wolbachia pipientis in Aedes aegypti mosquitoes

D. Thi Hue Kien, K. Edenborough, D. da Silva Goncalves, T. Thuy Vi, E. Casagrande, H. Thi Le Duyen, V. Thi Long, L. Thi Dui, V. Thi Tuyet Nhu, N. Thi Giang, H. Thi Xuan Trang, E. Lee, I. a. Donovan-Banfield, H. Thi Thuy Van, N. Minh Nguyet, N. Thanh Phong,  Virus Evolution,  9:vead016. 2023.
The introgression of antiviral strains of Wolbachia into Aedes aegypti mosquito populations is a public health intervention for the control of dengue. Plausibly, dengue virus (DENV) could evolve to bypass the antiviral effects of Wolbachia and undermine this approach. Here, we ...
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Hybrid incompatibilities in the anopheles gambiae species complex

A. Kriezis,  Imperial College London,  2023.
Malaria is an infectious disease caused by parasites of the genus Plasmodium which is responsible for approximately 400,000 deaths annually, primarily in sub-Saharan Africa. Malaria is transmitted by mosquitoes belonging to the Anopheles gambiae species complex. While progress ...
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Biopolitik: The Promise of Gene Drive

S. Todi,  Technopolitik,  2023.
Gene drives are genetic elements of an organism that are transmitted to progeny at higher than mendelian frequencies (>50%). Gene editing techniques such as CRISPR–Cas9 have made gene drives extremely efficient in laboratory settings and have shown the potential to reduce the ...
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A Zika virus-responsive sensor-effector system in Aedes aegypti

S. Basu, C. M. Reitmayer, S. Lumley, B. Atkinson, M. L. Schade-Weskott, S. Rooney, W. Larner, E. E. Montiel, R. Gutierrez-Lopez, E. Levitt, H. M. Munyanduki, A. M. E. Elrefaey, A. T. Clarke, S. Koit, E. Zusinaite, R. Fragkoudis, A. Merits and L. Alphey,  bioRxiv,  2023.02.06.527261. 2023.
Zika virus (ZIKV) is a recently re-emerged flavivirus transmitted primarily through the bite of an infected mosquito, Aedes aegypti being the main vector. ZIKV infection is associated with a range of adverse effects; infection during pregnancy can lead to foetal abnormalities, ...
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Ethical dilemma: Should we get rid of mosquitoes?

Talya Hackett,  TED-Ed,  2023.
Mosquitoes are responsible for more human deaths every year than any other animal, but very few of the 3,500 mosquito species actually transmit deadly diseases to humans. Scientists have been conducting experiments using engineered technologies called gene drives that could ...
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Engineered Antiviral Sensor Targets Infected Mosquitoes

E. Dalla Benetta, A. J. Lopez-Denman, H.-H. Li, R. A. Masri, D. J. Brogan, M. Bui, T. Yang, M. Li, M. Dunn, M. J. Klein, S. Jackson, K. Catalan, K. R. Blasdell, P. Tng, I. Antoshechkin, L. S. Alphey, P. N. Paradkar and O. Akbari,  bioRxiv,  2023.01.27.525922. 2023.
Escalating vector disease burdens pose significant global health risks, so innovative tools for targeting mosquitoes are critical. We engineered an antiviral strategy termed REAPER (vRNA Expression Activates Poisonous Effector Ribonuclease) that leverages the programmable ...
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Impact of randomised wmel Wolbachia deployments on notified dengue cases and insecticide fogging for dengue control in Yogyakarta City

C. Indriani, S. K. Tanamas, U. Khasanah, M. R. Ansari, Rubangi, W. Tantowijoyo, R. A. Ahmad, S. M. Dufault, N. P. Jewell, A. Utarini, C. P. Simmons and K. L. Anders,  Glob Health Action,  16:2166650. 2023.
BACKGROUND: Releases of Wolbachia (wMel)-infected Aedes aegypti mosquitoes significantly reduced the incidence of virologically confirmed dengue in a previous cluster randomised trial in Yogyakarta City, Indonesia. Following the trial, wMel releases were extended to the untreated ...
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Dynamics of an impulsive reaction-diffusion mosquitoes model with multiple control measures

Y. Li, H. Zhao and K. Wang,  Mathematical Biosciences and Engineering,  20:775-806. 2023.
It is well-known that mosquito control is one of the effective methods to reduce and prevent the transmission of mosquito-borne diseases. In this paper, we formulate a reaction-diffusion impulsive hybrid model incorporating Wolbachia, impulsively spraying of insecticides, spatial ...
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Gene Drives Could Fight Malaria and Other Global Killers but Might Have Unintended Consequences

M. Cobb,  Scientific American,  2023.
Every year more than 600,000 people die from mosquito-transmitted malaria, most of them children under age five. Some insects that are disease vectors, such as mosquitoes, are currently expanding their range around the world, bringing new threats. Genetic engineering can fix this ...
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Tolerance-conferring defensive symbionts and the evolution of parasite virulence

C. A. Smith and B. Ashby,  bioRxiv,  2022.
Defensive symbionts in the host microbiome can confer protection from infection or reduce the harms of being infected by a parasite. Defensive symbionts are therefore promising agents of biocontrol that could be used to control or ameliorate the impact of infectious diseases. ...
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Wolbachia Biology, Mechanisms and Applications 2022

David O'Brochta,  GeneConvene Global Collaborative,  2022.
Intracellular and extracellular symbiotic/commensal bacteria have enormous potential when manipulated and deployed appropriately to serve as agents of control of insects and the pathogens they transmit. Wolbachia, an intracellular bacteria, is a well studied system and one that ...
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Wolbachia wAlbB inhibit dengue and Zika infection in the mosquito Aedes aegypti with an Australian background

L. E. Hugo, G. Rašić, A. J. Maynard, L. Ambrose, C. Liddington, C. J. E. Thomas, N. S. Nath, M. Graham, C. Winterford, B. M. C. R. Wimalasiri-Yapa, Z. Xi, N. W. Beebe and G. J. Devine,  PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases,  16:e0010786. 2022.
Biological control of mosquito vectors using the endosymbiotic bacteria Wolbachia is an emerging strategy for the management of human arboviral diseases. We recently described the development of a strain of Aedes aegypti infected with the Wolbachia strain wAlbB (referred to as ...
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Risk Assessment on the Release of Wolbachia-Infected Aedes aegypti in Yogyakarta, Indonesia

D. Buchori, A. Mawan, I. Nurhayati, A. Aryati, H. Kusnanto and U. K. Hadi,  Insects,  13. 2022.
Wolbachia-infected Aedes aegypti is the latest technology that was developed to eliminate dengue fever. The Ministry of Research and Technology of the Republic of Indonesia (Kemenristekdikti) established an expert group to identify future potential risks that may occur over a ...
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Wolbachia-Virus interactions and arbovirus control through population replacement in mosquitoes

T. H. Ant, M. V. Mancini, C. J. McNamara, S. M. Rainey and S. P. Sinkins,  Pathogens and Global Health,  2022.
Following transfer into the primary arbovirus vector Aedes aegypti, several strains of the intracellular bacterium Wolbachia have been shown to inhibit the transmission of dengue, Zika, and chikungunya viruses, important human pathogens that cause significant morbidity and ...
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Research: Scientists Modify Mosquitoes That Can’t Spread Malaria

N. Kharbanda,  Onlymyhealth,  2022.
According to a research, scientists have found a way to genetically engineer mosquitoes with the capability to slow down the multiplication of malaria-causing parasites in their gut. This is an advance study, that can help in preventing the infecting of the disease in humans. The ...
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Explained: How Scientists Are Genetically modifying Mosquitoes To Reduce Malaria

Anonymous,  Outlook,  2022.
he Delhi High Court on Friday asked the state government to inform it within two weeks of the proposal of increasing the fine amount in mosquito breeding cases. The court last year took suo moto cognizance of the issue of large-scale mosquito breeding in the city, resulting in ...
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Explained: How scientists engineered mosquitoes that cannot spread malaria

FP Explainers,  Firstpost,  2022.
The world of science is reaching new heights. Scientists have now developed mosquitoes that will bite you but not cause malaria. The study was conducted by a team of researchers called Transmission: Zero at the Imperial College of London. The results of the research were ...
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Fitness costs of Wolbachia shift in locally-adapted Aedes aegypti mosquitoes

P. A. Ross and A. A. Hoffmann,  Environmental Microbiology,  2022.
Aedes aegypti mosquito eggs can remain quiescent for many months before hatching, allowing populations to persist through unfavorable conditions. Aedes aegypti infected with the Wolbachia strain wMel have been released in tropical and subtropical regions for dengue control. wMel ...
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Malaria-free mosquito engineered by scientists

GNA,  MODERN GHANA,  2022.
Scientists have genetically modified the main malaria-carrying species of mosquito in sub-SaharanAfrica to slow the growth of malaria-causing parasites in their gut, preventing transmission of thedisease to humans. When the Anopheles gambiae takes a blood meal, it produces two ...
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Malaria-free mosquito engineered by scientists

D. Davies,  GHANA NEWS AGENCY,  2022.
Scientists have genetically modified the main malaria-carrying species of mosquito in sub-Saharan Africa to slow the growth of malaria-causing parasites in their gut, preventing transmission of the disease to humans. When the Anopheles gambiae takes a blood meal, it produces two ...
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Scientists stunt parasite growth to tackle malaria

RSS24.news,  RSS24.NEWS,  2022.
Loss of life, loss of livlihoods and homelessness have already afflicted these flood marooned refugees in Pakistan. Now these living conditions means they also face sickness and and without protection malaria is a major threat. Health agencies try to protect people against ...
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Scientists are manipulating the DNA of mosquitoes to fight the spread of malaria

R. Min,  EURONEWS.NEXT,  2022.
Scientists say they have managed to genetically modify mosquitoes so that they are unable to spread malaria, a disease that kills well over half a million people each year. The changes cause mosquitoes to live shorter lives, while the parasites inside them, which cause the fatal ...
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Externalities modulate the effectiveness of the Wolbachia release programme

E. E. Ooi and A. Wilder-Smith,  The Lancet Infectious Diseases,  2022.
Despite the remarkable outcome in Yogyakarta, the wMel approach also has some challenges. In particular, the extent to which ecological, weather, and other external factors influence the dissemination and establishment of wMel in complex urban environments remains unclear. ...
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Estimating the effect of the wMel release programme on the incidence of dengue and chikungunya in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: a spatiotemporal modelling study

G. Ribeiro dos Santos, B. Durovni, V. Saraceni, T. I. Souza Riback, S. B. Pinto, K. L. Anders, et al.,  The Lancet Infectious Diseases,  2022.
Summary Background Introgression of genetic material from species of the insect bacteria Wolbachia into populations of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes has been shown in randomised and non-randomised trials to reduce the incidence of dengue; however, evidence for the real-world ...
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Scientists engineer mosquitoes that cannot spread malaria

J. Dalton,  Independen,  2022.
Scientists have engineered mosquitoes that cannot give humans malaria, saying their work could potentially eliminate the disease. Researchers at Imperial College London genetically modified the insects so that the growth of malaria-causing parasites in their guts was slowed.
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Scientists Engineer Mosquitoes That Can’t Transmit Malaria

C. Murez,  US News,  2022.
The fight against malaria could hinge on genetically engineered mosquitoes that have something called "gene drive."Researchers from the Transmission: Zero team at Imperial College London report that they have engineered mosquitoes that slow the growth in their gut of the ...
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Mosquitoes that can’t spread malaria engineered by scientists

,  2022.
Scientists have engineered mosquitoes that slow the growth of malaria-causing parasites in their gut, preventing transmission of the disease to humans The genetic modification causes mosquitoes to produce compounds in their guts that stunt the growth of parasites, meaning they ...
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Scientists engineer mosquitoes that can’t spread malaria

S. Varshney,  Gamacher Central,  2022.
Scientists have engineered mosquitoes that slow the growth of malaria-causing parasites in their gut, preventing transmission of the disease to humans. The genetic modification causes mosquitoes to produce compounds in their guts that stunt the growth of parasites, meaning they ...
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Mosquitoes with honeybee DNA could tame malaria

R. Blakely,  The Times,  2022.
A new form of genetically engineered mosquito could reduce the spread of malaria in Africa, a study suggests. The addition of DNA from a honeybee and genetic material from the African clawed frog prompt the new mosquitoes to produce compounds to stunt the growth of the parasite ...
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Genetically Engineered Mosquitoes Prevented the Growth of Malaria-causing Parasites in Their Gut

P. Mozter,  Nature World News 2022,  2022.
Abstract: Scientists have created mosquitoes that inhibit the development of malaria-causing parasites in their stomachs, therefore decreasing disease transmission to people. The genetic change allows mosquitoes to create substances in their intestines that inhibit parasite ...
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Wolbachia strain wAlbB remains stable in Aedes aegypti over 15 years but exhibits genetic background-dependent variation in virus blocking

X. Liang, C. H. Tan, Q. Sun, M. Zhang, P. J. Wong, M. I. Li, et al.,  PNAS Nexus,  2022.
The ability of the maternally transmitted endosymbiotic bacterium Wolbachia to induce cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI) and virus blocking makes it a promising weapon for combatting mosquito-borne diseases through either suppression or replacement of wild-type populations. Recent ...
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Mosquitoes are being genetically modified so they can’t spread malaria

M. Le Page,  New Scientist,  2022.
Gene editing mosquitoes so they die before malaria parasites can develop inside them could stop the spread of the deadly parasite entirely,
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Genetically-modified mosquitoes could ‘help wipe out malaria’

S. Knapton,  The Telegraph,  2022.
Mosquitoes that cannot spread malaria have been genetically engineered by British scientists, in a breakthrough that could help eliminate the disease. ...
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Gene drive mosquitoes can aid malaria elimination by retarding Plasmodium sporogonic development

Hoermann, Astrid, Habtewold, Tibebu, Selvaraj, Prashanth, Del Corsano, Giuseppe, Capriotti, Paolo, Inghilterra, Maria Grazia, Kebede, Temesgen M., Christophides, George K. and Windbichler, Nikolai,  Science Advances,  2022.
Gene drives hold promise for the genetic control of malaria vectors. The development of vector population modification strategies hinges on the availability of effector mechanisms impeding parasite development in transgenic mosquitoes. We augmented a midgut gene of the malaria ...
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Scientists engineer mosquitoes that can’t spread malaria

Imperial College London,  Phys Org,  2022.
Scientists have engineered mosquitoes that slow the growth of malaria-causing parasites in their gut, preventing transmission of the disease to humans. The genetic modification causes mosquitoes to produce compounds in their guts that stunt the growth of parasites, meaning they ...
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Extreme GM “extinction technology” of gene drives presented as “natural”

GM Watch,  GM Watch,  2022.
Now similar Orwellian moves are happening in the area of gene drives. A gene drive is a genetic engineering technology that forces a particular genetic modification through a population by changing the natural rules of inheritance, usually to ensure that it is increasingly – ...
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An optimal control problem for dengue transmission model with Wolbachia and vaccination

J. Zhang, L. L. Liu, Y. Z. Li and Y. Wang,  Communications In Nonlinear Science and Numerical Simulation,  116. 2022.
The release of Wolbachia-infected mosquitoes into the wild mosquitoes population is an excellent biological control strategy which can be effective against mosquito-borne infections. In this work, we propose a dengue transmission model that incorporates releasing Wolbachia into ...
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Changing mosquito genes, spreading bacteria: Science sees success vs dengue

C. E. Baclig,  INQUIRER.NET,  2022.
Wolbachia, according to WMP, are extremely common bacteria that occur naturally in 50 percent of insect species, including mosquitoes, fruit flies, moths, dragonflies, and butterflies. Aedes aegypti or dengue-carrying mosquitoes, however, do not normally carry Wolbachia. Studies ...
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Population replacement gene drive characteristics for malaria elimination in a range of seasonal transmission settings: a modelling study

S. Leung, N. Windbichler, E. A. Wenger, C. A. Bever and P. Selvaraj,  Malaria Journal,  21:226. 2022.
BACKGROUND: Gene drives are a genetic engineering method where a suite of genes is inherited at higher than Mendelian rates and has been proposed as a promising new vector control strategy to reinvigorate the fight against malaria in sub-Saharan Africa. METHODS: Using an ...
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A population modification gene drive targeting both Saglin and Lipophorin disables Plasmodium transmission in Anopheles mosquitoes

E. I. Green, E. Jaouen, D. Klug, R. P. Olmo, A. Gautier, S. A. Blandin and E. Marois,  bioRxiv,  2022.07.08.499187. 2022.
Lipophorin is an essential, highly expressed lipid transporter protein that is secreted and circulates in insect hemolymph. We hijacked the Anopheles gambiae Lipophorin gene to make it co-express a single-chain version of antibody 2A10, which binds sporozoites of the malaria ...
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The Florida Keys Mosquito Control District & Oxitec Announce Launch of Next Phase of Ground-Breaking Project

Oxitec,  Oxitec,  2022.
In a continuation of the FKMCD-Oxitec Mosquito Project, Oxitec and FKMCD announced that a new phase of the project (“Pilot D”) will be initiated on or after July 7th, 2022. This phase of the project will examine single-point releases of Oxitec’s male mosquitoes. In March ...
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Natural and Engineered Sex Ratio Distortion in Insects

A. Compton and Z. Tu,  Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution,  10. 2022.
Insects have evolved highly diverse genetic sex-determination mechanisms and a relatively balanced male to female sex ratio is generally expected. However, selection may shift the optimal sex ratio while meiotic drive and endosymbiont manipulation can result in sex ratio ...
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Testing non-autonomous antimalarial gene drive effectors using self-eliminating drivers in the African mosquito vector Anopheles gambiae

D. A. Ellis, G. Avraam, A. Hoermann, C. A. S. Wyer, Y. X. Ong, G. K. Christophides and N. Windbichler,  PLOS Genetics,  18:e1010244. 2022.
Author summary Gene drive is a method that allows the genetic modification of entire populations of harmful organisms. Their application to tackle invasive species, agricultural pests or insect disease vectors has been suggested. For example, they could reduce the capacity of ...
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Spatial modelling for population replacement of mosquito vectors at continental scale

N. J. Beeton, A. Wilkins, A. Ickowicz, K. R. Hayes and G. R. Hosack,  PLOS Computational Biology,  18:e1009526. 2022.
Malaria is one of the deadliest vector-borne diseases in the world. Researchers are developing new genetic and conventional vector control strategies to attempt to limit its burden. Novel control strategies require detailed safety assessment to ensure responsible and successful ...
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Wolbachia interacts with the microbiome to shape fitness-associated traits during seasonal adaptation in Drosophila melanogaster

L. P. Henry, M. Fernandez, S. Wolf and J. Ayroles,  bioRxiv,  2022.05.31.494239. 2022.
The microbiome contributes to many different host traits, but its role in host adaptation remains enigmatic. The fitness benefits of the microbiome often depend on ecological conditions, but fluctuations in both the microbiome and environment modulate these fitness benefits. ...
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Wolbachia 16S rRNA haplotypes detected in wild Anopheles stephensi in eastern Ethiopia

E. Waymire, S. Duddu, S. Yared, D. Getachew, D. Dengela, S. R. Bordenstein, M. Balkew, S. Zohdy, S. R. Irish and T. E. Carter,  Parasites and Vectors,  15:178. 2022.
About two out of three Ethiopians are at risk of malaria, a disease caused by the parasites Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax. Anopheles stephensi, an invasive vector typically found in South Asia and the Middle East, was recently found to be distributed across eastern ...
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Local adaptation of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes to Wolbachia-induced fitness costs

P. A. Ross and A. A. Hoffmann,  bioRxiv,  2022.05.06.490959. 2022.
Aedes aegypti mosquito eggs can remain quiescent for many months before hatching, allowing populations to persist through unfavorable conditions. Aedes aegypti infected with the Wolbachia strain wMel have been released in tropical and subtropical regions for dengue control. wMel ...
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MIT Researchers Propose Using Genetically Modified Mice to Fight Lyme Disease

K. Perrotte,  Field and Stream,  2022.
In Massachusetts, researchers at MIT are proposing an experiment that would involve releasing genetically engineered mice into the native mouse population to ultimately reduce the prevalence of Lyme disease.Nantucket Island is the area proposed for the study, which has been years ...
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Wolbachia endosymbionts in two Anopheles species indicates independent acquisitions and lack of prophage elements

S. Quek, L. Cerdeira, C. L. Jeffries, S. Tomlinson, T. Walker, G. L. Hughes and E. Heinz,  Microbial Genomics,  8. 2022.
Wolbachia is a genus of obligate bacterial endosymbionts that infect a diverse range of arthropod species as well as filarial nematodes, with its single described species, Wolbachia pipientis, divided into several ‘supergroups’ based on multilocus sequence typing. Wolbachia ...
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Aedes aegypti abundance and insecticide resistance profiles in the applying Wolbachia to eliminate dengue trial

W. Tantowijoyo, S. K. Tanamas, I. Nurhayati, S. Setyawan, N. Budiwati, I. Fitriana, I. Ernesia, D. S. Wardana, E. Supriyati, E. Arguni, Y. Meitika, E. Prabowo, B. Andari, B. R. Green, L. Hodgson, E. Rancès, P. A. Ryan, S. L. O'Neill, K. L. Anders, M. R. A,  PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases,  16:e0010284. 2022.
The Applying Wolbachia to Eliminate Dengue (AWED) trial was a parallel cluster randomised trial that demonstrated Wolbachia (wMel) introgression into Ae. aegypti populations reduced dengue incidence. In this predefined substudy, we compared between treatment arms, the relative ...
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A metapopulation approach to identify targets for Wolbachia-based dengue control

A. Reyna-Lara, D. Soriano-Paños, J. H. Arias-Castro, H. J. Martínez and J. Gómez-Gardeñes,  Chaos,  32:041105. 2022.
Over the last decade, the release of Wolbachia-infected Aedes aegypti into the natural habitat of this mosquito species has become the most sustainable and long-lasting technique to prevent and control vector-borne diseases, such as dengue, zika, or chikungunya. However, the ...
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Environmental factors influence the local establishment of Wolbachia in Aedes aegypti mosquitoes in two small communities in central Vietnam [version 2]

N. T. Hien, D. D. Anh, N. H. Le, N. T. Yen, T. V. Phong, V. S. Nam, T. N. Duong, N. B. Nguyen, D. T. T. Huong, L. Q. Hung, C. N. T. Trinh, N. V. Hoang, V. Q. Mai, L. T. Nghia, N. T. Dong, L. H. Tho, S. Kutcher, T. P. Hurst, J. L. Montgomery, M. Woolfit, E,  Gates Open Research,  5:147. 2022.
Background: The wMel strain of Wolbachia has been successfully introduced into Aedes aegypti mosquitoes and subsequently shown to reduce transmission of dengue and other pathogens, under both laboratory and field conditions. Here we describe the entomological outcomes of wMel ...
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UC Davis — Malaria Gene Drive Feasibility Analysis

Good Ventures,  Good Ventures,  2022.
Open Philanthropy recommended a grant of $10,248,967 over three years to UC Davis to support subsequent stages of a feasibility analysis of a potential test of gene drives for malaria control on the adjoining West African islands of São Tomé and Príncipe. The work, led by Dr. ...
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Special mosquitos to combat dengue fever in Binh Duong

L. Phuong,  VN Express,  2022.
Capsules containing mosquito eggs resistant to dengue fever viruses were released in southern Binh Duong's Thu Dau Mot Town on Thursday to help control the disease. The Wolbachia Project in southern Vietnam, conducted by the World Mosquito Program and collaborators, seeks to ...
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Symbionts and gene drive: two strategies to combat vector-borne disease

G.-H. Wang, J. Du, C. Y. Chu, M. Madhav, G. L. Hughes and J. Champer,  Trends in Genetics,  2022.
Mosquitoes bring global health problems by transmitting parasites and viruses such as malaria and dengue. Unfortunately, current insecticide-based control strategies are only moderately effective because of high cost and resistance. Thus, scalable, sustainable, and cost-effective ...
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Spatial modelling for population replacement of mosquito vectors at continental scale

N. J. Beeton, A. Wilkins, A. Ickowicz, K. R. Hayes and G. R. Hosack,  bioRxiv,  2021.10.06.463299. 2022.
Malaria is one of the deadliest vector-borne diseases in the world. Researchers are developing new genetic and conventional vector control strategies to attempt to limit its burden. Novel control strategies require detailed safety assessment to ensure responsible and successful ...
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Differential viral RNA methylation contributes to pathogen blocking in Wolbachia-colonized arthropods

T. Bhattacharya, L. Yan, J. M. Crawford, H. Zaher, I. L. G. Newton and R. W. Hardy,  PLoS Pathogens,  18:e1010393. 2022.
Arthropod endosymbiont Wolbachia pipientis is part of a global biocontrol strategy to reduce the replication of mosquito-borne RNA viruses such as alphaviruses. We previously demonstrated the importance of a host cytosine methyltransferase, DNMT2, in Drosophila and viral RNA as a ...
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A UC malaria initiative program receives grant for work researching genetically engineered mosquitoes

S. Slater,  The California Aggie,  2022.
Malaria, a mosquito-borne infectious disease, was discovered in 1880, and has remained widespread in tropical regions around the equator including parts of Africa, Asia and Latin America, resulting in thousands of deaths and a significant blow to economic development in these ...
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Gene drive mosquitoes can aid malaria elimination by retarding Plasmodium sporogonic development

A. Hoermann, T. Habtewold, P. Selvaraj, G. Del Corsano, P. Capriotti, M. G. Inghilterra, K. M. Temesgen, G. K. Christophides and N. Windbichler,  bioRxiv,  2022.02.15.480588. 2022.
Gene drives hold promise for the genetic control of malaria vectors. The development of vector population modification strategies hinges on the availability of effector mechanisms impeding parasite development in transgenic mosquitoes. We augmented a midgut gene of the malaria ...
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C-type lectin 4 regulates broad-spectrum melanization-based refractoriness to malaria parasites

M. L. Simões, Y. Dong, G. Mlambo and G. Dimopoulos,  PLOS Biology,  20:e3001515. 2022.
Anopheles gambiae melanization-based refractoriness to the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum has rarely been observed in either laboratory or natural conditions, in contrast to the rodent model malaria parasite Plasmodium berghei that can become completely melanized by ...
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Scientists find transmission chain-breaker, give new hope for fight against malaria

ANI,  ANI,  2022.
A recent study, published online in 'PLoS Biology', has revealed that blocking a key protein found in Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes -- the principal vector for malaria transmission to humans in Africa could thwart infection with malaria parasites and thus prevent them from ...
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Lab-scale characterization and semi-field trials of Wolbachia Strain wAlbB in a Taiwan Wolbachia introgressed Ae. aegypti strain

W. L. Liu, H. Y. Yu, Y. X. Chen, B. Y. Chen, S. N. Leaw, C. H. Lin, M. P. Su, L. S. Tsai, Y. Chen, S. H. Shiao, Z. Y. Xi, A. C. C. Jang and C. H. Chen,  PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases,  16:24. 2022.
Author summaryPrior to open field release, new genetic approaches that interfere with mosquito abilities and reduce mosquito population density require progressive evaluation both in the laboratory and contained field trials. Trials in contained outdoor systems are thus an ...
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Wolbachia: Biological Control Strategy Against Arboviral Diseases

I. Mohanty, A. Rath and R. K. Hazra,  Genetically Modified and other Innovative Vector Control Technologies,  2021.
Arboviral diseases like dengue, chikungunya, and Zika are among the major causes of mortality and morbidity in human population. The limited control methods together with lack of antiviral therapies and effective vaccines have paved way for new approaches. One such approach to ...
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Wolbachia Endosymbiont and Mosquito Vectors, with Emphasis on Lymphatic Filariasis Elimination

I. P. Sunish,  Genetically Modified and other Innovative Vector Control Technologies,  2021.
Wolbachia are maternally inherited intracellular bacteria, known to alter early development and mitotic processes in their hosts. They are frequently observed as a reproductive parasite, capable of inducing feminization, parthenogenesis, male killing, or cytoplasmic ...
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Genomic insertion locus and Cas9 expression in the germline affect CRISPR/Cas9-based gene drive performance in the yellow fever mosquito Aedes aegypti

W. R. Reid, J. Lin, A. E. Williams, R. Juncu, K. E. Olson and A. W. E. Franz,  bioRxiv,  2021.12.08.471839. 2021.
The yellow fever mosquito Aedes aegypti is a major vector of arthropod-borne viruses, including dengue, chikungunya, and Zika. A novel approach to mitigate arboviral infections is to generate mosquitoes refractory to infection by overexpressing antiviral effector molecules. Such ...
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Gene drive that results in addiction to a temperature-sensitive version of an essential gene triggers population collapse in Drosophila

G. Oberhofer, T. Ivy and B. A. Hay,  Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences,  118:e2107413118. 2021.
One strategy for population suppression seeks to use gene drive to spread genes that confer conditional lethality or sterility, providing a way of combining population modification with suppression. Stimuli of potential interest could be introduced by humans, such as an otherwise ...
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High-resolution in situ analysis of Cas9 germline transcript distributions in gene-drive Anopheles mosquitoes

G. Terradas, A. Hermann, A. A. James, W. McGinnis and E. Bier,  G3-Genes Genomes Genetics,  2021.
Gene drives are programmable genetic elements that can spread beneficial traits into wild populations to aid in vector-borne pathogen control. Two different drives have been developed for population modification of mosquito vectors. The Reckh drive (vasa-Cas9) in Anopheles ...
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High Temperature Cycles Result in Maternal Transmission and Dengue Infection Differences Between Wolbachia Strains in Aedes aegypti

M. V. Mancini, T. H. Ant, C. S. Herd, J. Martinez, S. M. Murdochy, D. D. Gingell, E. Mararo, P. C. D. Johnson and S. P. Sinkins,  mBio,  e0025021. 2021.
Environmental factors play a crucial role in the population dynamics of arthropod endosymbionts, and therefore in the deployment of Wolbachia symbionts for the control of dengue arboviruses. The potential of Wolbachia to invade, persist, and block virus transmission depends in ...
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Population replacement gene drive characteristics for malaria elimination in a range of seasonal transmission settings: a modeling study

S. Leung, N. Windbichler, E. Wenger, C. Bever and P. Selvaraj,  bioRxiv,  2021.11.01.466856. 2021.
Genetically engineering mosquitoes is a promising new vector control strategy to reinvigorate the fight against malaria in Sub-Saharan Africa. Using an agent-based model of malaria transmission with vector genetics, we examine the impacts of releasing population-replacement gene ...
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Modeling the efficacy of CRISPR gene drive for schistosomiasis control

R. E. Grewelle, J. Perez-Saez, J. Tycko, E. K. O. Namigai, C. G. Rickards and G. A. De Leo,  bioRxiv,  2021.10.29.466423. 2021.
CRISPR gene drives could revolutionize the control of infectious diseases by accelerating the spread of engineered traits that limit parasite transmission in wild populations. While much effort has been spent developing gene drives in mosquitoes, gene drive technology in molluscs ...
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A decade of stability for wMel Wolbachia in natural Aedes aegypti populations

P. A. Ross, K. L. Robinson, Q. Yang, A. G. Callahan, T. L. Schmidt, J. K. Axford, M. P. Coquilleau, K. M. Staunton, M. Townsend, S. A. Ritchie, M.-J. Lau, X. Gu and A. A. Hoffmann,  bioRxiv,  2021.10.27.466190. 2021.
Mosquitoes carrying Wolbachia endosymbionts are being released in many countries for arbovirus control. The wMel strain of Wolbachia blocks Aedes-borne virus transmission and can spread throughout mosquito populations by inducing cytoplasmic incompatibility. Aedes aegypti ...
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Novel Symbiotic Genome-Scale Model Reveals Wolbachia’s Arboviral Pathogen Blocking Mechanism in Aedes aegypti

N. E. Jiménez, Z. P. Gerdtzen, Á. Olivera-Nappa, J. C. Salgado and C. Conca,  mBio,  e0156321. 2021.
Arboviral diseases such as Zika and Dengue have been on the rise mainly due to climate change, and the development of new treatments and strategies to limit their spreading is needed. The use of Wolbachia as an approach for disease control has motivated new research related to ...
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Spatial modelling for population replacement of mosquito vectors at continental scale

N. J. Beeton, A. Wilkins, A. Ickowicz, K. R. Hayes and G. R. Hosack,  bioRxiv,  2021.10.06.463299. 2021.
We explore transmission of the gene drive between the subspecies, different hybridisation mechanisms, the effects of both local dispersal and potential wind-aided migration to the spread, and the development of resistance to the gene drive. We find that given best current ...
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Wolbachia-Conferred Antiviral Protection Is Determined by Developmental Temperature

E. Chrostek, N. Martins, M. S. Marialva and L. Teixeira,  mBio,  e0292320. 2021.
Overall, we show that Wolbachia-conferred antiviral protection is temperature dependent, being present or absent depending on the environmental conditions. This interaction likely impacts Wolbachia-host interactions in nature and, as a result, frequencies of host and symbionts in ...
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Assessment of fitness and vector competence of a New Caledonia wMel Aedes aegypti strain before field-release

N. Pocquet, O. O’Connor, H. A. Flores, J. Tutagata, M. Pol, D. J. Hooker, C. Inizan, S. Russet, J. M. Duyvestyn, E. C. Pacidônio, D. Girault, D. da Silva Gonçalves, M. Minier, F. Touzain, E. Chalus, K. Lucien, F. Cheilan, T. Derycke, S. Laumond, C. P. Sim,  PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases,  15:e0009752. 2021.
Dengue represents a risk for almost half of the world’s population, especially throughout the tropics. In New Caledonia, dengue outbreaks have become more frequent in the past decade along with the recent circulation of chikungunya and Zika viruses. The opportunity to use the ...
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Mosquito transgenesis for malaria control

S. Dong, Y. Dong, M. L. Simões and G. Dimopoulos,  Trends in Parasitology,  2021.
Malaria is one of the deadliest diseases. Because of the ineffectiveness of current malaria-control methods, several novel mosquito vector-based control strategies have been proposed to supplement existing control strategies. Mosquito transgenesis and gene drive have emerged as ...
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Identifying Sites for Testing Modified Mosquitoes as a Strategy to Eradicate Malaria

A. Fell,  UC Davis News,  2021.
In a newly published article in the journal Evolutionary Applications Professor Greg Lanzaro and his team at the Vector Genetics Laboratory, UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, set forth a framework for the selection of field sites in Africa best suited for testing ...
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Gene drives gaining speed

E. Bier,  Nature Reviews Genetics,  2021.
Gene drives are selfish genetic elements that are transmitted to progeny at super-Mendelian (>50%) frequencies. Recently developed CRISPR–Cas9-based gene-drive systems are highly efficient in laboratory settings, offering the potential to reduce the prevalence of vector-borne ...
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Selection of sites for field trials of genetically engineered mosquitoes with gene drive

G. C. Lanzaro, M. Campos, M. Crepeau, A. Cornel, A. Estrada, H. Gripkey, Z. Haddad, A. Kormos and S. Palomares,  Evolutionary Applications,  15. 2021.
Novel malaria control strategies using genetically engineered mosquitoes (GEMs) are on the horizon. Population modification is one approach wherein mosquitoes are engineered with genes rendering them refractory to the malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, coupled with a ...
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Combating mosquito-borne diseases using genetic control technologies

G.-H. Wang, S. Gamez, R. R. Raban, J. M. Marshall, L. Alphey, M. Li, J. L. Rasgon and O. S. Akbari,  Nature Communications,  12:4388. 2021.
Mosquito-borne diseases, such as dengue and malaria, pose significant global health burdens. Unfortunately, current control methods based on insecticides and environmental maintenance have fallen short of eliminating the disease burden. Scalable, deployable, genetic-based ...
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Targeting Conserved Sequences Circumvents the Evolution of Resistance in a Viral Gene Drive against Human Cytomegalovirus

M. Walter, R. Perrone, E. Verdin and F. Goodrum,  Journal of Virology,  95:e00802-21. 2021.
Gene drives are genetic systems designed to efficiently spread a modification through a population. They have been designed almost exclusively in eukaryotic species, especially in insects. We recently developed a CRISPR-based gene drive system in herpesviruses that relies on ...
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Using gene drives to control malaria

A. Fell,  Daily News,  2021.
A group of UC scientists led by Greg Lanzaro, professor of pathology, microbiology and immunology in the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, recently completed an analysis of a strategy aimed at eliminating malaria from Africa using genetically engineered mosquitoes. ...
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Population modification strategies for malaria vector control are uniquely resilient to observed levels of gene drive resistance alleles

G. C. Lanzaro, H. M. Sánchez C, T. C. Collier, J. M. Marshall and A. A. James,  BioEssays,  2021.
Cas9/guide RNA (gRNA)-based gene drive systems are expected to play a transformative role in malaria elimination efforts., whether through population modification, in which the drive system contains parasite-refractory genes, or population suppression, in which the drive system ...
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Stable high-density and maternally inherited Wolbachia infections in Anopheles moucheti and Anopheles demeilloni mosquitoes

T. Walker, S. Quek, C. L. Jeffries, J. Bandibabone, V. Dhokiya, R. Bamou, M. Kristan, L. A. Messenger, A. Gidley, E. A. Hornett, E. R. Anderson, C. Cansado-Utrilla, S. Hegde, C. Bantuzeko, J. C. Stevenson, N. F. Lobo, S. C. Wagstaff, C. A. Nkondjio, S. R.,  Current Biology,  31:2310. 2021.
Wolbachia, a widespread bacterium that can reduce pathogen transmission in mosquitoes, has recently been reported to be present in Anopheles (An.) species. In wild populations of the An. gambiae complex, the primary vectors of Plasmodium malaria in Sub-Saharan Africa, Wolbachia ...
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Using Wolbachia to Eliminate Dengue: Will the Virus Fight Back?

M. Edenborough Kathryn, A. Flores Heather, P. Simmons Cameron, E. Fraser Johanna and C. Pierson Ted,  Journal of Virology,  95:e02203-20. 2021.
Recent fieldtrials havedemonstratedthatdengue incidence can besubstantially reduced by introgressing strains of the endosymbiotic bacterium Wolbachia into Aedes aegypti mosquito populations. This strategy relies on Wolbachia reducing the susceptibility of Ae. aegypti to ...
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Vector control: Discovery of Wolbachia in malaria vectors

P. A. Ross and A. A. Hoffmann,  Current Biology,  31:R738-R740. 2021.
Wolbachia bacteria are being widely released for suppression of dengue transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes. Walker, Quek, Jeffries and colleagues present robust evidence for natural Wolbachia infections in malaria-vectoring Anopheles mosquitoes, paving the way for new ...
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The origin of island populations of the African malaria mosquito, Anopheles coluzzii

M. Campos, M. Hanemaaijer, H. Gripkey, T. C. Collier, Y. S. Lee, A. J. Cornel, J. Pinto, D. Ayala, H. Rompao and G. C. Lanzaro,  Communications Biology,  4:9. 2021.
Anopheles coluzzii is a major malaria vector throughout its distribution in west-central Africa. Here we present a whole-genome study of 142 specimens from nine countries in continental Africa and three islands in the Gulf of Guinea. This sample set covers a large part of this ...
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Selection of Sites for Field Trials of Genetically Engineered Mosquitoes with Gene Drive

G. C. Lanzaro, M. Campos, M. Crepeau, A. Cornel, A. Estrada, H. Gripkey, Z. Haddad, A. Kormos, S. Palomares and W. Sharpee,  bioRxiv,  2021.04.28.441877. 2021.
Novel malaria control strategies using genetically engineered mosquitoes (GEMs) are on the horizon. Population modification is one approach wherein mosquitoes are engineered with genes rendering them refractory to the malaria parasite coupled with a low-threshold, Cas9-based gene ...
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CRISPR may help curb malaria by altering a mosquito’s gut genes, new study suggests

Cornell Alliance for Science,  Genetic Literacy Project,  2021.
Altering a mosquito’s gut genes to make them spread antimalarial genes to the next generation of their species shows promise as an approach to curb malaria, suggests a preliminary study published in eLife. The study is the latest in a series of steps toward using CRISPR-Cas9 ...
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Eliminating malaria via a simple genetic modification

S. Gunn,  Front Line Genomics,  2021.
Despite decades worth of research and efforts, data from 2015 onwards suggests that there has been no significant progress in reducing global malaria cases. Every year, around 400,00 people die from malaria, with over 90% of cases being within sub-Saharan Africa. The rise of ...
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This Malaria Preventing Mosquito Is Not A GMO But Is A Science Boost For Nature – Will Activists Want To Block It?

H. Campbell,  science 2.0,  2021.
Mosquitoes like Aedes aegypti don't have any value ecologically. If Thanos snapped them out of existence tomorrow there is nothing they do that won't immediately be taken up by 3,000 other mosquito species, not to mention 25,000 bee species when it comes to pollination. The ...
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Breeding Malaria Out: Scientists Engineer Mosquitos to Spread Antimalaria Genes

L. Papadopoulos,  INTERSTING ENGINEERING,  2021.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), malaria is a "serious and sometimes fatal disease caused by a parasite that commonly infects a certain type of mosquito which feeds on humans." There are four types of malaria parasites: Plasmodium falciparum, P. ...
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Curbing Malaria’s Spread by Genetic Engineering

Anonymous,  Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News,  2021.
There is an urgent need to find new ways to combat the growing mosquito resistance to pesticides and malaria parasite resistance to antimalarial drugs. Gene drives are being tested as a new approach. In a new study, researchers from the Imperial College London reported that their ...
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New genetic modification could cut malaria spread

Staff Writers,  MALAYSIA NOW,  2021.
Altering a mosquito’s gut genes to make them spread antimalarial genes to the next generation of their species shows promise as an approach to curb malaria, suggests a preliminary study published in eLife on Tuesday. The study is the latest in a series of steps being taken ...
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Researchers Using Mutant Mosquitoes To End Malaria, Which Kills 4 Lakh Per Year

M. Mohanti,  India Times,  2021.
Every year, more than 22 crore people get infected with malaria and more than 4 lakh die because of it. In fact, in 2019, nearly half of the world's population was at risk of malaria. According to WHO, infants or children aged under 5 years are the most vulnerable group, ...
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Evidence for natural hybridization and novel Wolbachia strain superinfections in the Anopheles gambiae complex from Guinea

C. L. Jeffries, C. Cansado-Utrilla, A. H. Beavogui, C. Stica, E. K. Lama, M. Kristan, S. R. Irish and T. Walker,  Royal Society Open Science,  8:18. 2021.
Wolbachia, a widespread bacterium which can influence mosquito-borne pathogen transmission, has recently been detected within Anopheles (An.) species that are malaria vectors in Sub-Saharan Africa. Although studies have reported Wolbachia strains in the An. gambiae complex, ...
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Genetically modified mosquitoes for better health

D. Devis,  COSMOS,  2021.
One method of preventing these mosquito-born diseases is to use insecticides to kill the mozzies and remove them, but sometimes this only works as a short term solution, or has unintended devasting effects on the ecosystem. Another method for decreasing the number of ...
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Quantifying the risk of vector-borne disease transmission attributable to genetically modified vectors

G. R. Hosack, A. Ickowicz and K. R. Hayes,  Royal Society Open Science,  8:201525. 2021.
The relative risk of disease transmission caused by the potential release of transgenic vectors, such as through sterile insect technique or gene drive systems, is assessed with comparison with wild-type vectors. The probabilistic risk framework is demonstrated with an assessment ...
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Exploring Gene Drive Technologies in Agriculture, Biodiversity and Human Disease

The GBIRd Partnership and The GeneConvene Global Collaborative,  Gene Drive Research Forum,  2021.
The GBIRd Partnership and The GeneConvene Global Collaborative recently collaborated through The Gene Drive Research Forum, to create and produce an engaging conversation between Drs. Fred Gould and Charles Godfray about gene drive technologies – the potential benefits and ...
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CRISPR and the splice to survive: New gene-editing technology could be used to save species from extinction—or to eliminate them.

E. Kolbert,  New Yorker,  2021.
About a year ago, not long before the pandemic began, I paid a visit to the center, which is an hour southwest of Melbourne. The draw was an experiment on a species of giant toad known familiarly as the cane toad. The toad was introduced to Australia as an agent of pest control, ...
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Next-generation tools to control biting midge populations and reduce pathogen transmission

P. Shults, L. W. Cohnstaedt, Z. N. Adelman and C. Brelsfoard,  Parasites and Vectors,  14:31. 2021.
Biting midges of the genus Culicoides transmit disease-causing agents resulting in a significant economic impact on livestock industries in many parts of the world. Localized control efforts, such as removal of larval habitat or pesticide application, can be logistically ...
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Mosquito Sexual Selection and Reproductive Control Programs

L. J. Cator, C. A. S. Wyer and L. C. Harrington,  Trends in Parasitology,  37:330-339. 2021.
The field of mosquito mating biology has experienced a considerable expansion in the past decade. Recent work has generated many key insights about specific aspects of mating behavior and physiology. Here, we synthesize these findings and classify swarming mosquito systems as ...
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Control of malaria-transmitting mosquitoes using gene drives

T. Nolan,  Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences,  376:20190803. 2020.
In this article, I will discuss the relative merits of this type of gene drive, as well as barriers to its technical development and to its deployment in the field as malaria control. This article is part of the theme issue ‘Novel control strategies for mosquito-borne ...
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Mosquito population modification: the drive to malaria eradication

A. A. James,  BugBitten BMC,  2020.
We have had considerable success in the past demonstrating that we can use modern molecular biological and insect transgenesis tools to make genes that prevent mosquitoes from passing on parasites (see 1 and 2). We have focused most recently on laboratory experiments to find ways ...
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The promise of CRISPR and gene drive systems to end malaria in Africa

E. Gomez-Diaz,  ARRIGE ORG,  2020.
Presentation by Elena Gómez Díaz (IPBLN-CSIC, Granada, Spain) at the ARRIGE 2020 meeting on "The promise of CRISPR and gene drive systems to end malaria in Africa". Discussion is included at the end of the Ruud de Maagd presentation.https://youtu.be/te3MJ8EZoes
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Brave New Planet: Reshaping Nature Through Gene Drives

E. Lander,  Brave New Planet,  2020.
A new technology, called gene drives, has the power to spread any genetic instructions you wish across an entire animal or plant species in the wild. It might let us restore ecosystems ravaged by invasive species, or help species adapt to climate change. And, it might save ...
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Gene drive blocks malaria transmission in mosquitoes

labonline,  labonline,  2020.
Employing a strategy known as ‘population modification’, which involves using a CRISPR-Cas9 gene drive system to introduce genes preventing parasite transmission into mosquito chromosomes, University of California (UC) researchers have made a major advance in the use of ...
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Gene Drives: A Controversial Tool to Fight Malaria

H. Albert,  LABIOTECH.eu,  2020.
The possibility of creating gene drives was introduced into the scientific community in 2003 by Austin Burt, a professor at Imperial College London. Burt was studying ‘selfish genes’ that can copy themselves into a specific target DNA sequence. He suggested that these genes, ...
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A gene-drive rescue system for the modification of malaria mosquito populations

A. Adolfi,  Nature Research Bioengineering Community,  2020.
Mosquito populations can now be reliably modified using 1) antimalarial molecules that block parasite development and 2) a CRISPR-based gene drive system that mediates their rapid spreading across the vector population.
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UC researchers pioneer more effective method of blocking malaria transmission in mosquitoes

UCI,  UCI News,  2020.
University of California, Irvine postdoctoral researcher Adriana Adolfi, in collaboration with colleagues at UCI, UC Berkeley and UC San Diego, followed up on the group’s pioneering effort to develop CRISPR-based gene drive systems for making mosquito vectors resistant to ...
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Efficient population modification gene-drive rescue system in the malaria mosquito Anopheles stephensi

A. Adolfi, V. M. Gantz, N. Jasinskiene, H.-F. Lee, K. Hwang, G. Terradas, E. A. Bulger, A. Ramaiah, J. B. Bennett, J. J. Emerson, J. M. Marshall, E. Bier and A. A. James,  Nature Communications,  11:5553. 2020.
Here, we develop a recoded gene-drive rescue system for population modification of the malaria vector, Anopheles stephensi, that relieves the load in females caused by integration of the drive into the kynurenine hydroxylase gene by rescuing its function. Non-functional resistant ...
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Engineered Gene Drives: State of Research Webinar Series by The GeneConvene Global Collaborative September-October 2020

David O'Brochta and Hector Quemada,  GeneConvene Global Collaborative,  2020.
A series of technical webinars on engineered gene drive technology research and development given by leading researchers in the field.
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Viral gene drive in herpesviruses

M. Walter and E. Verdin,  Nature Communications,  11:4884. 2020.
Here, we report on a gene drive system that allows the spread of an engineered trait in populations of DNA viruses and, in particular, herpesviruses.
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Risks of releasing gene drives mosquitoes – a possible future scenario

Testbiotech,  Testbiotech,  2020.
Genetically engineering the genome of an organism with gene drive means that it will be replicated in every following generation. This allows the altered gene to spread rapidly throughout natural populations, which may be decimated or even eradicated. The video contains both ...
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A CRISPR homing gene drive targeting a haplolethal gene removes resistance alleles and successfully spreads through a cage population

J. Champer, E. Yang, E. Lee, J. Liu, A. G. Clark and P. W. Messer,  Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences,  202004373. 2020.
Here, we present a CRISPR homing drive that was able to successfully spread to all individuals in a laboratory cage study in Drosophila melanogaster without any apparent evolution of resistance.
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GeneConvene Global Collaborative Webinar Series

David O'Brochta and Hector Quemada,  GeneConvene Global Collaborative,  2020.
This is a series of public scientific and technical seminars by researchers actively involved in the research and development of engineered gene drive and related systems. Presentations will be aimed at other researchers and scientists, highlighting the latest investigations in ...
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Anthony James / Mosquito Modification

Big Picture Science,  SETI Institute,  2020.
Anthony James, vector biologist at the University of California, Irvine, describeshow we might genetically modify mosquitoes to make them unable to pass malaria on to humans.
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Next-generation gene drive for population modification of the malaria vector mosquito, Anopheles gambiae

R. Carballar-Lejarazú, C. Ogaugwu, T. Tushar, A. Kelsey, T. B. Pham, J. Murphy, H. Schmidt, Y. Lee, G. C. Lanzaro and A. A. James,  Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences,  202010214. 2020.
We show here that the Cas9/guide RNA-based gene-drive components of a genetically-engineered malaria mosquito vector, Anopheles gambiae, achieve key target product profile requirements for efficacy and performance.
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Engineered Reproductively Isolated Species Drive Reversible Population Replacement

A. Buchman, I. Shriner, T. Yang, J. Liu, I. Antoshechkin, J. M. Marshall, M. W. Perry and O. S. Akbari,  bioRxiv,  2020.08.09.242982. 2020.
Engineered reproductive species barriers are useful for impeding gene flow and driving desirable genes into wild populations in a reversible threshold-dependent manner. We engineer multiple reproductively isolated SPECIES and demonstrate their threshold-dependent gene drive ...
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Gene Drive Webinars -ENSSER, CSS, VDW and SC

European Network of Scientists for Social and Environmental Responsibility,  ,  2020.
This series of 5 Webinars by some of the authors of the interdisciplinary Gene Drive Report (2019) and were organised by four organisations of independent scientists: the European Network of Scientists for Social and Environmental Responsibility (ENSSER), Critical Scientists ...
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Converting endogenous genes of the malaria mosquito into simple non-autonomous gene drives for population replacement

A. Hoermann, S. Tapanelli, P. Capriotti, E. K. G. Masters, T. Habtewold, G. K. Christophides and N. Windbichler,  bioRxiv,  2020.
Here we explore how minimal genetic modifications of endogenous mosquito genes can convert them directly into non-autonomous gene drives without disrupting their expression.
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Gene editing and the war against malaria

E. Bier and E. Sobber,  American Scientist,  102:162. 2020.
Malaria is a devastating disease transmitted from person to person by mosquitoes. It kills more than 400,000 people per year, more than half of those deaths being children 5 years old or younger. CRISPR (clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats) is a new ...
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Engineering a minimal gene drive system for integral replacement in Drosophila melanogaster

A. Nash,  Imperial College London,  2020.
Gene drives represent a powerful tool for the control of vector-borne diseases. By suppressing or replacing vector populations, laboratory studies have highlighted the potential for this group of tools to make a powerful impact on the burden of zoonotic disease. Current genetic ...
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Biomphalaria glabrata Granulin Increases Resistance to Schistosoma mansoni Infection in Several Biomphalaria Species and Induces the Production of Reactive Oxygen Species by Haemocytes

J. R. Hambrook, A. A. Gharamah, E. A. Pila, S. Hussein and P. C. Hanington,  Genes,  11:12. 2019.
In this study, we demonstrate that in vivo addition of Biomphalaria glabrata pro-granulin (BgGRN) can reduce Schistosoma mansoni infection success in numerous Biomphalaria sp. when challenged with different S. mansoni strains. We also demonstrate that cleavage of BgGRN into ...
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Malaysia Wolbachia trials: Battling dengue and other mosquito-borne viruses

,  2019.

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Possible replacement of malaria mosquitoes

S. Avery Jones,  Transactions of The Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene,  51:469-470. 1957.
Sir,--The purpose of this letter is to draw the attention of research workers in control of mosquito colonies to the possible value of investigating the factors governing the infection of mosquitoes with parasites of human malaria. If a strain of a vector species could be ...
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