Genetically modified mosquitoes and Africa

Anopheles mosquitoes, which carry the parasite that causes malaria, are the subject of genetic engineering research. Copyright: Image by Emphyrio from Pixabay

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Episode 44

In Sub-Saharan Africa, malaria is a leading cause of death for children under five and with an estimated 220 million cases worldwide every year, malaria remains a public health crisis.

For some, genetically modified mosquitoes could be a game-changing tool in the fight against malaria and other mosquito-borne diseases. But others say that genetic engineering threatens the delicate circle of life.

The World Health Organization has just released an updated version of its ‘Guidance framework for testing of genetically modified mosquitoes’. Our reporter Michael Kaloki finds out what genetically modified mosquitoes are, why guidance has been developed around this research, and what it all means for Africa.

Send us your questions from anywhere in the world — text or voice message via WhatsApp to +254799042513.

Africa Science Focus, with Selly Amutabi.

This programme was funded by the European Journalism Centre, through the European Development Journalism Grants programme, with support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation