Genetically Modified Mosquitoes Released in Brazil to Combat Hemorrhagic Fever

aedes_mosquito_2014_04_07

In this Brazilian farm town where legions of people have suffered from dengue fever, a campaign is fighting back, releasing swarms of mosquitoes engineered to wipe out their own species.

Last year, Brazil reported 1.4 million cases of dengue. There is no vaccine. The most severe form of the illness, dengue hemorrhagic fever, can lead to shock, coma and death.

The insects are genetically modified in a laboratory with a lethal gene designed to devastate the Aedies aegypti population and reduce dengue’s spread. [C]onventional public health campaigns to fight dengue by fumigating and adding larvicide to water tanks have had little impact because Aedes aegypti often live and breed inside homes and develop resistance to insecticides.

As noted in the article, in the U.S. or especially Europe, the outrage would be palpable, but in Brazil, where all other means have been tried and failed, there’s barely even the hint of opposition.

Via globalpost.

This entry was posted in Science by Heretic. Bookmark the permalink.

About Heretic

I design video games for a living, write fiction, political theory and poetry for personal amusement, and train regularly in Western European 16th century swordwork. On frequent occasion I have been known to hunt for and explore abandoned graveyards, train tunnels and other interesting places wherever I may find them, but there is absolutely no truth to the rumor that I am preparing to set off a zombie apocalypse. Nothing that will stand up in court, at least. I use paranthesis with distressing frequency, have a deep passion for history, anthropology and sociological theory, and really, really, really hate mayonnaise. But I wash my hands after the writing. Promise.

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