Written by Samantha O’Loughlin, Target Malaria

(This is the second of a series of six posts about common gene drive misconceptions. To read my first blog, about the difference between gene drive and CRISPR, go here)

So do you think creating a gene drive organism is easy?? The short and simple answer is no. It will take time before gene drive can be harnessed to be a useful tool for conversation or health purposes. Gene drive is not easy, at least not at the moment. Although gene editing is becoming easier with the advent of CRISPR/Cas9, gene drive is still very complicated to develop and involves specialised equipment and many person-hours. It is certainly not something that you can do in your garden shed! Although the development costs are not high compared with many other technologies, it is still not cheap. The equipment alone would cost hundreds of thousands of US dollars, and that is just for a start; you will need a lot more funds if you want to know whether your gene drive is working and whether it will still work in a natural setting.