By Shambhavi Naik
Gene drives are being explored for alleviating vector-borne infectious diseases however, the risks of employing them need to be understood. This Slidedoc assesses the potential use of gene drives in India by performing a stage-wise risk assessment of deploying gene drive.
Gene drive mosquitoes are an application of Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR) technology. The application is to develop mosquitoes that decrease the incidence of mosquito-borne diseases.
Research into gene drives should be promoted however, there are risks associated with their potential use in India. Given the nature of the technology, it is recommended that robust monitoring mechanisms for disease incidence, mosquito burden and ecological impact be implemented before deploying these mosquitoes.
Data driven decisions on identifying the type of gene drive and deployment locations will ensure effective use of the technology.TDS-Gene-Drives-Risk-Assessment-SN-2017-03