From ancient byways to modern highways, glimpses of faith are everywhere...

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Gene drive to where?

Adult Mosquito   (Image by LadyofHats)
There is no GPS to predict where a gene drive might take us.  Genetic engineering that is capable of eradicating an entire species should therefore be approached with the utmost caution.

The New York Times reports that scientists have known for two years how to “alter or perhaps eliminate entire populations in the wild.”  The temptation to do so with such threatening species as “the Aedes aegypti mosquito that transmits the Zika virus” has become greater and greater.

Other species on a possible hit list include  malaria-spreading mosquitos, herbicide-resistant Palmer amaranth, and (ironically) biodiversity-destroying mice.

Given that all life on Earth is somehow interconnected, what would the potential effects of such genetic meddling be?  The answer to this might not become evident until driving back home is no longer an option. 


Copyright June 9, 2016 by Linda Van Slyke   All Rights Reserved

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