Malaria is a life-threatening disease caused by parasites that are transmitted by mosquito bites. About 3.2 billion people – almost half of the world’s population – are at risk of malaria, according to the World Health Organization.
So yeah, it's a pretty scary disease that scientists have been working finding a cure, or a way to fix it.
And it looks like they've found a way to prevent it.
Oh, you know. Just by creating hundreds of genetically modified mosquitoes that are incapable of spreading the malaria parasite, and sending them out into the wild to force the anti-malarial genes into swarms of wild mosquitoes.
Malaria kills over 400,000 people a year. That's a lot of lives that we could be saving if we release these helpful mosquitos into the wild.
They have been test for several years in labs, and this scientific technique has been used before with crops and other wild plants. So it's worked before.
A warning published in August in the prestigious journal Science, by teams in the UK, US, Australia and Japan, said the accidental release of modified organisms “could have unpredictable ecological consequences.”
The warning was that essentially something in a science lab can seem promising, but without understanding the experiment in a larger scale, we have no idea how this will effect the world.
So, help save thousands of people or release crazy strong mosquitos that take over the world? (I'm being a bit melodramatic, but you get the point)