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Can gene drives offer a more humane approach to pest control?

Gene drive is a powerful technique for ensuring that a particular genetic trait is inherited by all descendants. This means that a gene of interest can spread throughout an entire population within a few generations. The technology is already being investigated to propagate an infertility gene in mosquitos, in the hope of supressing populations and halting the spread of malaria and other diseases. Researchers at the University of Edinburgh’s Roslin Institute are exploring how the technology could be applied to help control mammalian pests. The team is evaluating gene drives to spread infertility genes through rodent populations, as a potentially more humane method of vermin control.

 

Speakers:

Prof. Bruce Whitelaw, Principal Investigator at the University of Edinburgh’s Roslin Institute and Chair of Edinburgh Genomics

Dr Simon Lillico, Research Fellow, the University of Edinburgh’s Roslin Institute

Gus McFarlane, PhD student, the University of Edinburgh’s Roslin Institute

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