Tackling Zika Transmission at the Source With Genetically Engineered Resistant Mosquitoes

From Contagion Live
February 14, 2019

As several Zika virus vaccine candidates undergo clinical trials, a group of investigators is taking an alternate approach to quell transmission by genetically engineering mosquitoes to be resistant to the virus.

In a new study published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), a team from the University of California, San Diego, collaborated with investigators in Australia and Taiwan and used genomic technology to generate a mosquito that is resistant to Zika virus.

“Transgenic-based (and specifically synthetic small RNA- based) methods for making disease-refractory mosquitoes can be quite effective,” Anna B. Buchman, PhD, research data analyst at Akbari Lab, Division of Biological Sciences, University of California, San Diego, and lead investigator on the study, told Contagion®.

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