- Scientists have moved on from using bed nets and insecticides to kill malaria-spreading mosquitoes, to genetically modify the mosquitoes by inserting a gene that leads to the production of male offsprings.
- Since only females carry the malaria-causing microorganism, the spread of the disease is controlled in the short-term while eventually the whole population gets wiped out.
- Scientists injected a gene from a slime mould into the mosquito which attached itself to the X chromosome during sperm-making process effectively masking the sperms leading to production of male offsprings.
- Although the technique of sex modification had been suggested long ago, it is the first time something like this has been created from the scratch.
- Going forward, the researchers are aiming to produce a version of this genetic system that will spread itself through the target species, removing females and causing demise of the population.
- Read at: http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-opinion/genetically-modified-mosquitoes-a-quantum-leap-in-tackling-malaria/article6106024.ece