Novel prospects in malaria control

Malaria still kills over half a million people a year, and has further insidious effects on health and development. Substantial progress has been made in reducing the burden of this disease in the last few decades, though there is concern about developing resistance to the drugs and insecticides that are our main current weapons to combat the pathogen and its mosquito vectors. In this talk I will describe new strategies under development to fight malaria. They are based on gene editing and the notion of a “selfish gene” that spreads through a population even to the detriment of that population. I will particularly explore the social acceptability of such novel genetic technologies, the ethics of their deployment in developing countries, and the possible demographic consequences.