A laboratory in Italy is designing a very special kind of genetically modified organism (GMO). According to NPR, scientists are engineering these mosquitoes so that they can eradicate malaria-transmitting mosquitoes around them. Because the lab is in Italy, even if its security were to be compromised, the mosquitoes being engineered would not survive the natural conditions outside.
But while the scientists hope to test out these GMOs in Africa, critics and activists are opposed to the testing. Nnimmo Bassey, the director of Health of Mother Earth Foundation in Nigeria said, “This is a technology where we don’t know where it’s going to end. We need to stop this right where it is. They’re trying to use Africa as a big laboratory to test risky technologies.” The project is being funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.