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Oxitec Responds to University of Panama's 'Forum on Transgenic Mosquitoes'
Date:3/22/2012

LONDON, March 22, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The University of Panama held a 'Forum on Transgenic Mosquitoes' on Wednesday 21st March 2012. Unfortunately, all members of the panel at this event have previously registered on repeated occasions as entrenched opposition to the use of transgenic technologies, ensuring that a balanced and productive discussion could not take place. Oxitec, which in 2010 entered into a partnership with the Gorgas Institute in Panama to evaluate a new approach to combating the Dengue mosquito, Aedes aegypti, is disappointed not to have been granted the opportunity to participate fully on this occasion.

At Oxitec we recognise that openness, transparency and public discourse are central to the success of our approach. Oxitec is happy to engage in this process. We hope that in future all public debate will take into account the need for a balanced discussion.

Hadyn Parry, CEO of Oxitec, said:

"As with any new technology, our approach should be examined through expert review and the regulatory process. Experts need to be able to ask questions, and regulators need to determine the conditions for trials. Oxitec is no exception. We see our approach as potentially being an important part in the fight against Dengue.  We are fully committed to the evaluation process and engaging with the public, media and experts. "

To this end, we have taken a number of steps, including:

  • Organization and participation in technical symposia (2009/2010) involving a range of Panamanian and international stakeholders to debate the use of transgenic mosquitoes in Panama as part of a World Health Organisation (WHO) project on genetic control methods against mosquito vectors in disease endemic countries.
  • The organization of a technical symposium (which took place on October 26th , 2011) involving Panamanian academics, government officials, the Pan-American Health Organization and commu
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SOURCE Oxitec
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