FDA mulls altered-mosquito dengue control plan | Vaccine News DailyPosted: December 7, 2012
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is deciding whether to allow thousands of genetically altered mosquitoes to be released in Key West, Florida, to fight the spread of dengue fever.
Some Key West residents are concerned that not enough research has been conducted into the potential ramifications to the Keys’ ecosystem, according to Associated Press.
Mosquito control officials and the British company Oxitec plan to release non-biting male Aedes aegypti mosquitoes that can carry the virus. The males have been genetically altered to pass along a birth defect that kills any of their progeny before they reach adulthood.
Over several generations, scientists expect Key West’s Aedes aegypti to dwindle along with the number of dengue infections.
“The science of it, I think, looks fine. It’s straight from setting up experiments and collecting data,” Michael Doyle, the head of the Florida Keys Mosquito Control District, said, NewsVine.com reports.