Because Mosquitos have rights, too ya know!

A chuckle from today’s  Medline Links –

Genetically modified fungi kill malaria-causing parasites in mosquitoes

(No, that’s not the funny part – although that is quite the mouthful, isn’t it?)

Here’s what made me snort coffee:

Spraying malaria-transmitting mosquitoes with a genetically modified fungus can kill the malaria parasite without harming the mosquito, potentially reducing malaria transmission to humans, according to a new study published in the journal Science.

Oh thank goodness!  I can keep myself safe without the angst of having killed such a sweet little thing.  Aren’t they cute close up?

But in full disclosure….there’s actually a method to their madness:

One of these new strategies is killing Anopheles mosquitoes by spraying them with the naturally occurring fungus, Metarhizium anisopliae. Previous studies have found that this method nearly eliminates disease transmission when mosquitoes are sprayed soon after acquiring the malaria parasite. However, this strategy is not sustainable in the long term. If treating mosquitoes with the fungus kills them before they have a chance to reproduce and pass on their susceptibility to the spray, mosquitoes resistant to the fungus, which would reproduce normally, will soon become predominant and the spray will no longer be effective.

Because of this, Dr. St. Leger and colleagues tried a more focused approach. Rather than developing fungi that rapidly kill the mosquito, they genetically modified M. anisopliae to block the development of the malaria parasite in the mosquito.

Shame really – I was ready to join the cause.  Save the mosquito!!!  I’d nominate it for the Dem’s mascot but another bloodsucker already beat me to it….

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2 Responses

  1. Save the mosquitos!

    The humans….eh, not so much.

  2. Fungus on bloodsuckers. That’s an appropriate metaphor for today’s liberals! ; )

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