Geneticexperts.org. NAS report on gene drives recommends field trials but not environmental release.
Geneticexperts.org. NAS report on gene drives recommends field trials but not environmental release. pdf
Professor Akbari said this about gene drive recommendations:
Dr. Omar Akbari, Assistant Professor of Entomology, University of California, Riverside (webpage):
Expertise: Genetics and physiology of mosquitoes, genetic control technologies for limiting mosquito-borne diseases
“The NAS report does a commendable job at overviewing the technologies and identifying the knowledge gaps and barriers that will be important to address before any gene drive approach can be tested and utilized in the environment.
“As they conclude, and I agree, the potential applications of gene drives are quite exciting, however, the science is still premature and there are far too many unanswered questions to justify the release of a gene drive beyond the laboratory or contained field trials. Therefore, the committee urges caution until we understand better the ethical, regulatory, scientific, social and environmental consequences of unleashing gene drive containing organisms freely into the environment.
“To address these issues, the committee recommends that phased field testing, robust ecological risk assessments, and public engagement will be essential components for moving any gene drive from the laboratory to the field, and I generally agree with these recommendations. The committee also points out that regulation of gene drives will likely fall under the Coordinated Framework for the Regulation of Biotechnology. However, the federal agencies included in the current Coordinated Framework (FDA, USDA, EPA), do not have clear lines of authority over the potential applications of gene drive research.
“This issue of who will govern a technology that has no boundaries and can persist in the environment long-term will be very important address as this technology develops further in various species. Overall, this is a highly complex issue and the committee’s recommendations for a cautionary, collaborative, and multi-disciplinary, approach to future research and governance of gene drives is a good one.”