Though small, and seemingly insignificant, mosquitoes are among the most dangerous creatures on earth.
They are the primary vectors for major diseases such as dengue fever, malaria, yellow fever and Zika, which infect hundreds of millions of people throughout the world, killing millions every year. Over half the world’s population is vulnerable to mosquito-born illness.
Though the Zika virus was first discovered in 1947, it was never considered much of a threat, as the symptoms included a mild fever, skin rashes, muscle and joint pain and conjunctivitis. But in 2015 the disease popped up Brazil, where it was blamed for causing the unborn to developed malformed brains.
Thanks to world trade, Zika is rapidly being spread throughout the world by its mosquito vector. Many of the traditional ways of fighting mosquitoes are losing their effectiveness, as the mosquitoes develop immunity to them. And so we ask...
Should we release GMO mosquitoes to fight Zika?
Food Chain Radio & Forums #1,051 (Tags: University of Washington University of California Assistant Professor Omar Akbari, tropical diseases, dengue fever, malaria, yellow fever, Zika, pest control, genetically-modified mosquitoes)