Tags: Zika Virus | bill gates | donates | mosquitoes | malaria

Bill Gates Donates $4M to Create Sexed-Up Self-Killing Mosquitoes

Bill Gates Donates $4M to Create Sexed-Up Self-Killing Mosquitoes
American businessman and philanthropist Bill Gates makes a speech at the Malaria Summit at 8 Northumberland Avenue on April 18, 2018, in London, England. (Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

By    |   Sunday, 24 June 2018 02:15 PM

Bill Gates is donating $4 million to create sexed-up self-killing mosquitoes in a bold move to fight malaria, Fox News reported.

The idea is to develop genetically modified male mosquitos containing a self-limiting gene to mate with their female counterparts.

The gene would ensure that, once the females give birth, their offspring would die off before adulthood.

According to The World Health Organization, only certain species of mosquitoes of the Anopheles genus, and only females of those species, can transmit malaria.

Female Anopheles mosquitoes pick up the malaria parasite from infected people when they bite to obtain blood needed to nurture their egg.

Gates' gene-engineered male mosquitoes could eradicate the danger of blood-sucking female mosquitos, Fox News noted.

The tech mogul is hoping to curb malaria "within a generation" and is using funds from his charity organization, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, to support the project.

Gates is actively involved in the fight against malaria and has funded various campaigns in the past.

This latest initiative is the brainchild of a U.K. company called Oxitec, which has dealt with the Zika virus with similar gene-engineered mosquitoes, Fox News said.

However, the campaign has been met with strong opposition from Friends of the Earth, an environmental charity which has deemed Oxitec's genetically-modified mosquitos as "potentially harmful" and a potential threat to human health and the environment.

The organization further criticized Oxitec of "putting its commercial interests ahead of public and environmental safety" and has questioned the ethic behind its work.

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Bill Gates is donating $4 million to create sexed-up self-killing mosquitoes in a bold move to fight malaria.
bill gates, donates, mosquitoes, malaria
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2018-15-24
Sunday, 24 June 2018 02:15 PM
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