In an effort to stop the mosquito-borne Zika virus, scientists are using genetically modified mosquitos. The illness, which does not have a vaccine and cannot be prevented by drugs, is currently the cause of a travel advisory issued by the Center for Disease Control (CDC). The outbreak has reached pandemic proportions in South America.
Biotechnical insect control company Oxitech developed a strain of genetically engineered mosquitos that mimic the ones that carry Zika virus and the similar Dengue Fever. Through their tests they have been able to significantly reduce (by 90%) the mosquito population in Brazil. This could have a huge impact on the spread of the Zika virus and holds much potential for other diseases like Malaria.
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