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Genetically modified mosquitoes may soon be released in FL

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Genetically modified mosquitoes may soon be released in FL

Postby daughternature » Sun Feb 12, 2012 1:51 am

Biotech company secretly releases millions of GM mosquitoes in Cayman Islands (First published in 2010)
Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/030449_mosqu ... z1m9DtYtlS

Genetically modified mosquitoes may soon be released in Florida
Sunday, February 12, 2012 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/034943_genet ... z1m9EskveP

(NaturalNews) In an effort to help eradicate dengue fever and the mosquitos that spread it, the Florida Keys Mosquito Control District (FKMCD) is seeking federal and state approval to release hundreds of thousands of genetically-modified (GM) mosquitos designed to kill off the natural Aedes aegypti variety of the fly throughout Key West, Florida.

The agency, which already routinely performs aerial sprayings of the area with anti-mosquito chemicals, believes it will save money in the long run by releasing the GM mosquitos. Rather than spend $400,000 or more a year to conduct the aerial sprayings, FKMCD says it would instead only have to spend $200,000 to $300,000 a year on the GM mosquitos.

Created by U.K.-based insect eradication company Oxitec, the GM mosquitos have been created with an added gene that, unless they are given the antibiotic tetracycline, will automatically kill them. When they mate with wild mosquitos, these GM mosquitos also pass on this gene to the offspring, which is intended to gradually decrease the population of wild mosquitos over time.

If approved, the release of GM mosquitos in Key West will represent the first ever release of a GM creature in the U.S., and on a trial basis where scientists really have no idea what will happen. Like all other GMOs, it is unknown whether or not the GM mosquitos will have a detrimental effect on the environment or humans, or how killing of large amounts of mosquitos will disrupt the life cycles of natural ecosystems.

Similar trials involving the release of GM mosquitos have already occurred in both the Cayman Islands and in Malaysia, according to reports. In the Cayman Islands, Oxitec secretly released the mosquitos without approval, and did not notify the public that it was conducting a massive ecological experiment that could have potentially life-altering consequences until a year after the GM mosquitos were released (http://www.naturalnews.com/030449_mosqu ... lands.html).

Though the vast majority of the GM mosquitos being released are male, which do not bite humans, a small percentage of them are female. So looking at the situation just from a human health perspective, what are the risks involved with a human getting bitten by a GM mosquito? Nobody really knows, as Oxitec has not conducted any long-term research on the safety of GM mosquitos interacting with other creatures or with humans.

Mosquitos, as annoying as they can be, also play a critical role in the food chain, and particularly the animal food chain. They also serve as plant and crop pollinators, without which we may not be able to grow food.

Sources for this article include:




Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/034943_genet ... z1m9EaSDxc
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Genetically modified mosquitoes

Postby daughternature » Tue Jan 03, 2017 4:08 pm

http://www.newsviralnet.com/news/Florid ... osquitoes/

Dr. John Norris III in September told the Keynoter he wants consent to monitor the health of Keys residents over several years to see what effect a release of GM Aedes aegypti mosquitoes will have on humans. Norris still wants to swab the noses of people who live in the trial area, wherever that may be, when the Florida Keys Mosquito Control District chooses a site for the spring 2017 release.

Pending U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval, the trial will happen in one of six places under consideration by the district, according to Director Andrea Leal. District commissioners signed a contract with Biotech company Oxitec on Nov. 19.

Oxitec raises GM mosquitoes in a lab and says when released and after mating, the offspring die almost immediately, resulting in a smaller population of Aedes aegypti, which carry Zika and other viruses.

“If they’re saying they’ve created the perfect life form in version 1.0, I find that hard to believe,” Norris said of Oxitec’s mosquitoes.

They are genetically engineered to need the antibiotic tetracycline to survive, he said. Since bacteria develop resistance to antibiotics after exposure to too much or too little, the surviving bacteria could become even more powerful and resistant to medicine down the road.

“I want to see, if there are resistant bugs, does the resistance spread to the human population?” Norris told the Keynoter. The nasal swabs would track the bacterial count of residents living in GM mosquito-populated areas, which Norris said has never been done.

The swabs would be sent to Dr. Barry Kreiswirth, professor and director of the Laboratory for Molecular Drug Resistance at Rutgers University in New Jersey, for examination. The Oxitec trial will last for a maximum two years but the swab research could last from three to five years if it happens.

Norris wants to catch GM mosquitoes at the future trial site for his own examination and he’s trying to garner support from the Monroe County Medical Society in the form of a petition to the Mosquito Control District.

“Hopefully I’ll have more than 100 signatures by the end of the year,” Norris said of the doctors who want Oxitec’s mosquitoes cultured to determine what kinds of antibiotic-resistant bacteria they may carry before they’re released into the Florida Keys.

He also wants a letter of support from the Florida Medical Association asking the Mosquito Control District to not release Oxitec mosquitoes without being cultured first.

“It’s not to stop the release. I just want them to test the bugs before they release them and factor in any resistant germs,” Norris said.
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