Verily's answer to Fresno's mosquito woes is 20 million more

From Engadget - July 14, 2017

When female mosquitoes mate with males infected with the bacteria Wolbachia pipientis, the resulting eggs are not viable. However, females also infected with the bacteria can produce offspring after mating with infected males, and wild mosquitoes of both sexes are found to be infected in some regions of the country. However, because the bacteria is not found in wild populations around Fresno and because the males ca not transfer the bacteria to females, enough infected males and enough time should render the invasive species moot.

Starting now, Verily will release one million mosquitoes per week for 20 weeks in two Fresno neighborhoods as part of its Debug project. The company developed automated mass mosquito production and sex-sorting technology, allowing for much larger release efforts. These mosquitos are not genetically modified, though last year the FDA did approve the use of genetically modified mosquitoes to fight Zika, and male mosquitoes do not bite, so no worries, Fresno residents.


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