We’re one month into the so-called “friendly” aedis aegypti project, and Oxitec said it has now released more than one million genetically-modified male mosquitos.
Mosquito Research and Control Unit partner Oxitec said it’s now getting its first signs that its GMO males are mating with wild females.
It says the flourescent marker gene, present in eggs fertilised by the GMo males, is showing up in concentrations of five to ten percent in MRCU egg traps, which it says is an encouraging start.
“Since we started quite slowly the releases, just a couple of releases a week with the lower numbers, we are now building up the numbers to make sure we reach that 50% mark,” said Oxitec operations manager Renaud Lacroix.
Mr. Lacroix said when the flourescent marker gene is present in more than half of the eggs, the aedis aegypti population will see a drastic decrease in the treatment area.