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Various Techniques Must Be Examined For Mosquito Control, WHO Says

News outlets discuss a WHO statement on potential techniques to control mosquitoes that transmit Zika and other diseases.

BBC News: Zika virus: WHO backs GM mosquito trials
“The World Health Organization (WHO) has backed trials of genetically modified (GM) mosquitoes that could be used in the fight against the Zika virus. The WHO also said sterile irradiated male mosquitoes could also be released to mate with wild females…” (2/16).

Deutsche Welle: Zika virus: WHO supports controversial genetically modified mosquitoes
“…The Geneva-based U.N. health body said in a statement on Tuesday that controversial methods such as genetically modified mosquitoes may be necessary to wipe out the insects now spreading Zika across the Americas. Cases have also been reported in dozens of countries across Asia and Africa…” (2/16).

The Guardian: WHO paves way for use of genetically modified mosquitoes to combat Zika
“… ‘Given the magnitude of the Zika crisis, WHO encourages affected countries and their partners to boost the use of both old and new approaches to mosquito control as the most immediate line of defense,’ the WHO statement said…” (Radford, 2/16).

Reuters: Genes, bugs, and radiation: WHO backs new weapons in Zika fight
“…However, the concept of wiping out an entire mosquito species also raises serious ecological questions, since it runs counter to preserving biodiversity…” (Hirschler, 2/16).

Washington Times: WHO looks for new ways to wipe out mosquitoes, Zika
“…Health officials in Brazil and elsewhere are still pleading with citizens to knock out areas of standing water where mosquitoes can breed, calling to the most effective way to cut the insects’ ranks…” (Howell, 2/16).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.