Genetically Modified Mosquitos have been approved by the FDA for a trial in Florida.
The mosquitoes, produced by Oxitec, have two copies of a gene that has reduced mosquito populations by 90% in Brazil, Panama, and the Cayman Islands. The mosquitos that carry Zika, have been found in Phoenix and Maricopa County.
The approval by the FDA is one step that Oxitec needs to approve its field trial in the Florida Keys. Currently the Florida Keys Mosquito Countrol District spends one million dollars a year to fight the Aedes aegypti, with the ability to reduce 30-60 per cent of the population with insecticide. These mosquitos adapt very quickly to insecticide, and the genetically modified mosquitos provide the best hope.
While there are bound to be some who will object, by modifying the mosquito with two copies of the killer gene, this provides the best solution for control of this type of mosquito. Once again GMO will probably save us – provided the anti-science crowd doesn’t get too upset. Somehow I don’t see Greenpeace objecting to this.
Dr. Terry Simpson
Dr. Terry Simpson received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Chicago where he spent several years in the Kovler Viral Oncology laboratories doing genetic engineering. He found he liked people more than petri dishes, and received his MD. Dr. Simpson, a renowned weight loss surgeon, is a leading advocate of culinary medicine. A frequent contributor to media outlets discussing health related topics and advances in medicine, he is also a proud dad, husband, author, cook, and surgeon “in that order.” For media inquiries, please visit www.terrysimpson.com.