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U of A researchers: 5 to 10 years from implementing mosquito ‘birth control’

TUCSON- Researchers say they have invented a “birth control” for mosquitoes, and say they could implement the treatment as early as 2024.

Dr. Roger Miesfeld at the University of Arizona has been working on the project with his team for more than 15 years.

Miesfeld says the “Eggshell Organizing Factor 1” (EOF-1) will essentially make the eggs of female mosquitoes unviable.

“Because without eggs, you don’t have mosquitoes,” he said.

Researchers are now freezing mosquitoes and then treating them, but Miesfeld said he expects future treatments to be more user-friendly at scale.

“Can be sprayed, put on bed nets,” he said. “It has a very large global impact.”

Miesfeld said the female mosquito has the highest chance of spreading disease and biting humans.

“The female mosquito is the only one that drinks blood. She bites to get protein for eggs,” he said. “She has to bite a human who has the pathogen and then pass it to the next human.”

He expects the product to be available for trials in 5 to 10 years.

Editor’s note: This article was written by KPNX’s Lisa Nico.

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Priscilla Casper

Priscilla Casper is an anchor and multi-skilled journalist for News 4 Tucson. She anchors weekdays at noon and 4 p.m.

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