As part of a webinar series on “Decision and Analysis Tools for Complex Problems” organized by GeneConvene, Dr Laura Schmitt-Olabisi, Associate Professor at Michigan State University will be discussing how participatory modeling can be applied to respond to problems in Africa on December 16, 2021.

By Ana Kormos, Program Manager, University of California Irvine Malaria Initiative (UCIMI)

The World Health Organization has just released its annual World Malaria Report, emphasizing the need for continued action to meet global malaria targets. While there were severe disruptions to service because of the pandemic, the situation could have been far worse. Early WHO projections were likely averted because many countries took proactive measures to reinforce their malaria control programs.

More investment and support for research into emerging tools for conservation is needed to prevent further biodiversity loss, according to a new paper published in Conservation Genetics. The study explores how new genomic technologies, including gene drive, could be used to address existing conservation challenges and prevent the extinction of endangered species.

In the southern region of Brazil, a new invasive species threatens to alter the ecosystem forever. According to a recent article published in Science, genetic tools, including gene drive, could provide a solution.

The alien species are small arrow-shaped, caramel-coloured mussels, native to the Yangtze River in China. Although they are referred to as Golden mussels, they are anything but precious to the local ecosystem in Brazil. The species is thought to have arrived in the Americas around 1998 through the ballast water of ships coming from Asia. The mussels have rapidly choked out native species such as crabs and plants growing along the rivers because there are no local predators to control them.

By Naima Sykes, Target Malaria

On November 10th, we celebrate World Science Day for Peace and Development, an international occasion to highlight the importance of science in society and the need to engage stakeholders in debates on emerging scientific issues. By linking science more closely with society, this day aims to raise awareness of possible solutions provided by research and innovation to some of the major global challenges we are facing today.