Manipulating nature: Scientists query wildlife birth-control method

Australian scientists are raising concerns over the unpredictable nature of a contraceptive vaccine that aims to control populations of wild animals, such as rabbits and foxes.

Writing in the latest issue of the journal, Reproduction, UNSW genetics expert Professor Des Cooper warns that the immuno-contraception method is not fully effective and is manipulating natural reproduction in ways that can't be predicted or controlled.

Professor Cooper also raises concerns that individuals that survive the vaccine may be more likely to carry infectious diseases with the potential to affect other animals.

An immuno-contraceptive vaccine causes an animal's immune system to produce antibodies that act against some essential event or structure in the reproductive process. The antibodies can act against sperm, eggs or reproductive hormones, which prevent either fertilization or the production of sperm and ova.

Proponents of the technique, which was first tested nearly 20 years ago, regard it as more humane than the conventional methods of controlling wildlife populations, such as shooting, trapping, poisoning or viral diseases. It has drawn support from some politicians and animal-welfare agencies.

An expert in mammal reproduction, Professor Cooper, of the UNSW School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences, questions immuno-contraception on three grounds.

"Firstly, immuno-contraceptives are ineffective against substantial minorities of animals, probably for genetic reasons," Professor Cooper says. "If so, the genes responsible for this lack of response will be passed on to offspring. Within a few generations most of the population will be unresponsive to the immunocontraceptive, so its effectiveness as a form of birth control is likely to be short-lived."

Professor Cooper's research reveals that than in 27 out of 32 immunocontraceptive control trials around the world, 10 per cent of animals remained

Contact: Professor Des Cooper
University of New South Wales

Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Manipulating single cell receptor alters animal behavior
2. Scientists show that mitochondrial DNA variants are linked to risk factors for type 2 diabetes
3. Scientists prove that disputed Korean stem cell line comes from an unfertilized egg and not cloning
4. Scientists move closer to bio-engineered bladders
5. Scientists find stem cell switch
6. Scientists discover new way to study nanostructures
7. Scientists a step closer to understanding how anaesthetics work in the brain
8. Scientists to make news at Computational Biology Conference
9. Accident-prone? Scientists link brain function to knee injuries
10. Scientists take next step in understanding potential target for ovarian cancer treatment
11. Scientists find brown fat master switch

Post Your Comments:

(Date:4/13/2017)... 2017 UBM,s Advanced Design and Manufacturing event ... emerging and evolving technology through its 3D Printing and ... alongside the expo portion of the event and feature ... focused on trending topics within 3D printing and smart ... event will take place June 13-15, 2017 at the Jacob ...
(Date:4/11/2017)... Florida , April 11, 2017 ... a security technology company, announces the appointment of independent Directors ... Bendheim to its Board of Directors, furthering the company,s ... ... of NXT-ID, we look forward to their guidance and benefiting ...
(Date:4/4/2017)... YORK , April 4, 2017   EyeLock ... today announced that the United States Patent and Trademark ... patent broadly covers the linking of an iris image ... same transaction) and represents the company,s 45 th ... latest patent is very timely given the multi-modal biometric ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/11/2017)... Austin, TX (PRWEB) , ... October 11, 2017 ... ... in August compared the implantation and pregnancy rates in frozen and fresh ... the contribution of progesterone and maternal age to IVF success. , After comparing ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Dr. Bob Harman, founder and CEO of VetStem Biopharma, ... The event entitled “Stem Cells and Their Regenerative Powers,” was held on ... DVM, MPVM was joined by two human doctors: Peter B. Hanson, M.D., Chief of ...
(Date:10/9/2017)... 2017  BioTech Holdings announced today identification and ... ProCell stem cell therapy prevents limb loss in ... demonstrated that treatment with ProCell resulted in more ... compared to standard bone marrow stem cell administration.  ... reduction of therapeutic effect.  ...
(Date:10/7/2017)... Arizona (PRWEB) , ... October ... ... 15 years’ experience providing advanced instruments and applications consulting for microscopy and ... in-house expertise in application consulting, Nanoscience Analytical offers a broad range of ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: