Global health organizations have long tried to combat malaria using bed nets and insecticides to target disease-carrying mosquitoes. But malaria continues to exact a huge toll, killing over a million people each year (see "Winning the War Against Malaria").
Another strategy is to genetically engineer mosquitoes that are resistant to the malaria parasite. Roughly a decade ago, Johns Hopkins researcher Marcelo Jacobs-Lorena produced such mosquitoes, which generated their own antimalarial peptides, in work that appeared in Nature (see "Malaria-Resistant Mosquitoes"). This approach seemed promising in the lab, but has been difficult to implement in the field.