Context: A continuous surge in the cases of dengue disease is a worldwide concern. Scientists claim that the Wolbachia Method can help curb the spread of dengue by 77%.
- Wolbachia is a type of bacteria that is commonly found in many arthropods, including insects. It has evolved to naturally infect these insects and manipulate their reproductive biology.
- Wolbachia method does not involve genetic modification of the target insect species itself. It is considered a form of biological control rather than genetic engineering.
- In this method, naturally occurring Wolbachia bacteria can be introduced into male population by infecting insects in a laboratory setting and then releasing them into the wild.
- When these Wolbachia-infected insects male mate with females that are not infected with the same strain of Wolbachia, these bacteria are passed on to their offspring through the normal reproductive process and their offspring are less likely to survive or reproduce.
- Since the method does not suppress mosquito populations or involve genetic modification, it is safe for humans, animals and the environment.