Questions about Genetically Engineered Mosquitoes

  1. Will people get bit by genetically engineered mosquitoes? – Females will be released!

Yes.  Oxitec tried to claim at a meeting in Key West that, “we can do this male only release so we can release the insect is safe if you like, and not release both male and female together”

However, an audience member accused them of spreading misinformation and they were finally forced to admit about 1 in 1500 will be female.  Since they release millions of mosquitoes that means thousands of them will be females and that means those thousands of females will bite people.

The Official FDA Report on Oxitec’s GMO Mosquito Product estimates that 62 biting females would be released per person in Key Haven if the test were allowed to proceed.  No one can know the effects of Oxitec’s artificial DNA entering the human bloodstream through mosquito bites.  A university study in Japan showed that GMO Mosquitoes can transmit their artificial DNA by biting humans.

  1. Are these mosquitoes sterile?

logo-gmoNo.  At a meeting in Key West Oxitec claimed, “we’ll send out the males and like most males they are biologically programmed to look for females. They’ll mate. The female will lay eggs and they won’t survive up to adults.”

Once again an audience member accused them of spreading misinformation and Oxitec was forced to admit, “indeed, 3-4% of the offspring that inherit one copy of this gene survive to adult”.  That is still different than their website where they say 3-5% survive and in their own study where they admit 18% or more survive in the presence of cat food, which Mosquito Control admits happens.

The FDA Report reveals that Oxitec’s process does not sterilize mosquitoes.  Instead, a “lethal gene” is present which makes offspring die sooner than their wild counterparts.  About 5% of the GMO Mosquitoes do not have the lethal sequence, meaning they can be expected to reproduce in the wild.  Released females will reproduce too.  The combined DNA from GMO Mosquitoes and wild mosquitoes is not the same as Oxitec’s cloned strain produced in a lab.  There is no way to predict the effects this can have on nature, including causing another competitive mosquito species in the area to rise up and dominate.

  1. Will this genetically engineered mosquito release fight mosquito-borne diseases?

No.  Oxitec admitted during a meeting in the Keys that, “In terms of dengue transmission we have done 4 or 5 trials now, but those trials have been too small to be able to show any sort of effect on dengue.”

Since this trial planned for FL Keys is the same size as the others, and there are currently no cases of mosquito-borne diseases in the Keys, it will not reduce any mosquito-borne diseases.  However, Oxitec releases thousands of biting and disease spreading female mosquitoes, which can spread mosquito-borne diseases such as dengue fever, chikungunya, Zika, etc.  So this this genetically engineered mosquito release could initially increase mosquito-borne diseases.

  1. Are these genetically engineered mosquitoes the same as regular mosquitoes? GMO Mosquitoes contain artificial DNA including E.Coli and Herpes Simplex Virus.

No. These genetically engineered mosquitoes express a synthetic protein based on a fusion of sequences from E.coli and the Herpes Simplex virus, and another synthetic protein based on sequences from coral. These proteins each have stretches of identical amino acid sequences of known allergens, which may cause allergic reactions when susceptible humans are exposed to these genetically engineered mosquitoes.

The FDA Report lays out the source of the artificial genes that make up Oxitec’s patented sequence grown into each cloned mosquito.  They contain parts from several strains of wild mosquitoes along with E.Coli bacteria, Herpes Simplex Virus, cabbage moths, fruit flies, and a fluorescent sea coral.  Just  as in the movie ‘Jurassic Park’ (the book it came from was written as a warning), there is no way to predict the effects of introducing this artificial DNA into the food chain through reproduction, consumption of mosquitoes by other animals, soil contamination, or biting.


  1. GMO Mosquitoes must be continually released along with pesticide sprayThe FDA Report, as-well-as the much advertised tests in Brazil indicate that pesticide spraying must continue along with the constant release of GMO Mosquitoes. In the Key Haven test alone, over 14 million mosquitoes would be released in total, 3 times a week, over a period of 22 months. In a news story from June, outgoing Director Michael Doyle said that GMO Mosquitoes would be “Very Expensive”
  2. Will the genetically engineered mosquitoes travel outside of the Keys?

Yes.  Some studies observed Aedes aegypti traveling up to 2,500 meters.  This distance could easily place a genetically engineered mosquito in a vehicle intended for another state or another country.  With over 3 million visitors to the Florida Keys a year this is a likely scenario and now, with the Zika threat on our shore Oxitec has hired two PR Firms to push the GMM agenda –Hill+Knowlton (Check their clients) and a fake citizens group out of Tallahassee called VancoreJones, using the fear of Zika and now, Naled (which should be banned) to infiltrate our media media and our elected officials pushing GMM’s as a “safe” viable alternative. These GM Mosquitoes are now earmarked to be released not only in Miami and Tampa, but, throughout the State of Florida and beyond.

  1. Secret Keys mosquito lab built without public consent. ‘Never Again’ recently leaked the secret agreement between Oxitec and the Florida Keys Mosquito Control District which allowed the $4 billion private company to build a commercial GMO Mosquito factory inside of a taxpayer-funded building. Four public employees are expected to report to Oxitec’s Product Manager Derric Nimmo and all communications about the test must be approved by Oxitec.  At its most recent meeting, the Board approved using the Marathon lab to raise GMO mosquitoes for release in all of Florida and in other cities across the United States.
    Sign the petition: Note: For 22 months, FL Keys AND NOW, with Zika threat (MIAMI AND TAMPA) Mosquito Control, and our Elected Officials (As an option to Naled) are urging emergency release of millions of GMO mosquitoes, including biting females. These mosquitoes have DNA sequences based on herpes simplex virus & E.coli. They may be carrying tetracycline resistant bacteria that may be transmitted to humans and pets when they are exposed to these mosquitoes.banner-gmo
    What can you can do to stop mosquitoes?  Remove Mosquito Breeding Areas!  Any standing water around your home has the potential to be a mosquito breeding ground.

    • Make sure your gutters are clean to keep any standing water from collecting.
    • Drill holes in any containers like garbage cans to allow the water to drain.
    • Regularly change water in bird baths or children’s pools.
    • Make sure no puddles are forming under your air conditioners.
    • Remove old tires or any other items that may collect water.
    • Turn kayaks and canoes upside down.
    • If it is supposed to rain, shut off sprinklers to reduce puddles.
    • Remove bromiliads and other water retaining plants.
    • Check your property after it rains for any puddles, and fill in puddles with soil and plant native plants there to keep the soil in place.

    Get a Net! And use a Fan!

    Untreated mosquito nets are an effective measure against mosquito bites.  Although Aedes aegypti are primarily early morning/daytime feeders, they have been seen feeding at night under artificial lighting and may rest and even breed in your home.  A bed net can provide protection for 1/3 of your day.  For the rest of the day there are mosquito nets for strollers, cribs, gazebos, and even head nets.  You can buy several varieties of mosquito nets, just make sure you get an untreated net, or you will be exposed to insecticides.

    Make a mosquito trap.

    • A cup or bottle
    • Water
    • Dish soap (preferably clear colored)

    Directions:  (Share with your friends)