How genetically modified mosquitoes could eradicate malaria

Malaria has tormented humans for millennia. Ancient literature and 5,000-year-old Egyptian mummies mention it.

150–300 million died from the disease in the 20th century. Despite technological and medicinal breakthroughs, 619,000 individuals died from the disease in 2021.

Malaria kills 96% of Africans, 80% of whom are under five. Experts say it's unacceptable that children and pregnant women still die of malaria.

Anopheles mosquitoes, especially Anopheles gambiae in sub-Saharan Africa, spread Plasmodium parasites that cause malaria.

Malaria control often targets mosquitoes. Insecticide-treated mosquito nets and indoor spraying have greatly reduced malaria. It persists.

Bed nets and spraying have worked well for 20 years, but they won't eliminate malaria.

Researchers have damaged male mosquito DNA with radiation since the 1950s.

To reduce disease vectors, the insects are sterilized and unable to reproduce.

Oxitec, a biotechnology company in Abingdon, UK, has engineered Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, which spread Zika and dengue, to generate female offspring that die before adulthood.