We are proud to announce we will be coordinating a brand new, three-year program of genetic biocontrol research, which will identify fast acting gene drives designed to spread an inherited characteristic through a population at higher-than-normal rates.
Using targeted gene drives, scientists aim to interrupt the breeding cycle of mice and potentially other ferals, which could keep populations at manageable levels.
The $1.8 million research program will be led by Professor Paul Thomas at our partner organisation the University of Adelaide in collaboration with our member organisation CSIRO.
The NSW Minister for Agriculture, Adam Marshall said cutting edge solutions meant future mouse plagues could be extinguished before they begin.
This specific research funding will test two strategies for population control and recommend at least one for future suppression of mice. The ‘X-shredder’ approach eliminates sperm carrying the X chromosome, producing more male than female offspring. The ‘female infertility’ approach spreads a genetic modification that would eventually make females infertile.
We look forward to seeing the outcomes of this world-class innovative research being led by Aussie scientists.
See more about this announcement here – https://www.therural.com.au/story/7281758/biological-control-flagged-for-mouse-plague/