Modifying mosquitoes to suppress disease transmission: Is the long wait over?
For more than 50 years it has been a dream of medical entomologists and public health workers to control diseases like malaria and dengue fever by modifying, through genetics and other methods, the arthropods that transmit them to humans. A brief synopsis of the history of these efforts as applied to mosquitoes is presented; none proved to be effective in reducing disease prevalence. Only in the last few years have novel approaches been developed or proposed that indicate the long wait may be over. Three recent developments are particularly promising: CRISPR-Cas9 driven genetic modification, shifting naturally occurring allele frequencies, and microbe-based modifications.
Powell, J. R. (2022). Modifying mosquitoes to suppress disease transmission: Is the long wait over?. Genetics, 221(3), iyac072.