Thursday, April 21, 2011

GM mosquitoes offer malaria hope

Genetically manipulated mosquitoes could be the answer to prevent malaria from spreading and killing around a million people every year. Malaria is a mosquito-borne infectious disease of humans caused by a protist called Plasmodium. The parasite travels to the human liver after a mosquito sting and proceeds to red blood cells multiplicating and causing symptoms that typically include fever and headache, in severe cases progressing to coma, and death.

Scientists believe they aren't far away from being able to manipulate the DNA of wild mosquitoes in order to fight malaria. In the laboratory, they made a gene spread from a handful of mosquitoes to most of the population in just a few generations. If the right gene can be spreaded then researchers hope to reduce the number of malaria infections. This research, however, has a great challenge - getting those genes to spread from the gene-manipulated mosquitoes to the vast number of wild insects across the globe. Unless the gene gives the mosquito an advantage, the gene will arguably disappear.

You can view the whole article here.


12 comments:

  1. Huh. That is a damned ironic turn of events!

    Next they need monkeys that cure the aids virus =X.

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  2. Very interesting idea so lets hope it works. Don't cure the disease but eliminate the source.

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  3. @Azoo Haha! :D way to go science!

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  4. Great blog man! Keep up the good work!

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  5. i don't care how they do it as long as it works

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  6. And to think that in the past 100 years so many medical advances have taken place. Where will we be 50 years down the road? The thought scares me but intrigues me at the same time

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  7. Glad to see science is helping us more than destroying us.

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  8. Even if they will find you cure to aids, africans will still belive in the curing powers of black magic and voodoo.

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  9. sounds like using snake venom to make anti-venom

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  10. They should give mosquitos something to resist the heartworm parasite as well lol.

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