Population modification of Anopheline species to control malaria transmission.
Carballar-Lejarazú R., James AA.
Vector control strategies based on population modification of Anopheline mosquitoes may have a significant role in the malaria eradication agenda. They could consolidate elimination gains by providing barriers to the reintroduction of parasites and competent vectors, and allow resources to be allocated to new control sites while maintaining treated areas free of malaria. Synthetic biological approaches are being used to generate transgenic mosquitoes for population modification. Proofs-of-principle exist for mosquito transgenesis, the construction of anti-parasite effector genes and gene-drive systems for rapidly introgressing beneficial genes into wild populations. Key challenges now are to develop field-ready strains of mosquitoes that incorporate features that maximize safety and efficacy, and specify pathways from discovery to development. We propose three pathways and a framework for target product profiles that maximize safety and efficacy while meeting the demands of the complexity of malaria transmission, and the regulatory and social diversity of potential end-users and stakeholders.