As the discussion around gene-drive modified organisms has intensified to help combat public health issues such as Zika and other infectious diseases, the National Academy of Sciences has convened an expert committee to address a measured approach to research and governance of gene drive technologies.
The University of Maryland’s Dr. Lisa Taneyhill, a leading developmental biologist and associate professor in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources contributed her expertise as a member of the 15-person committee. Taneyhill, in conjunction with her colleagues produced a new report from the NAS concluding that gene-drive modified organisms are not ready to be released into the environment and require more research in laboratories and highly controlled field trials. The committee recommends a collaborative, multidisciplinary, and cautionary approach in order to sift through the uncertainty posed by this fast-moving field of study.
Gene Drives on the Horizon: Advancing Science, Navigating Uncertainty, and Aligning Research with Public Values can be accessed at: http://nas-sites.org/gene-drives/. An archived recording of the report release event and a four page summary of key findings are also available through this link.
Lisa Taneyhill is available for media commentary. Her contact information is contained here.
June 8, 2016
UMD Professor Contributes to NAS Report on Gene-Drive Modified Organisms
Did You Know
UMD's Neutral Buoyancy Research Facility, which simulates weightlessness, is one of only two such facilities in the U.S.