This is a follow-up blog to “Release of Genetically Modified Mosquitoes Delayed”
Dr Lee Han Lim, Head, Medical Entomology Unit & WHO Collaborating Centre for Vectors, IMR, released a response to the recent public outcry regarding the planned release of genetically-modified mosquitoes into public spaces. He details that “exhaustive studies lasting four years confirmed that the biology, behaviour, mating competitiveness and vectorial capacity of the genetically-modified Aedes aegypti are not altered.” This research was published (journal unknown), and reviewed by the Genetic Modification Advisory Committee (GMAC) and the National Biosafety Board (NBB) and a release study was approved. Public advisory sessions were held, with public briefings and signage. An article in Nature confirmed that the public was informed. Regarding of mosquito offspring, the lab-observed 3%survivorship is likely an overestimate, as ample food, no predation, and ideal enviornmental conditions were present during the trial.