تهديد البعوض

ستانفورد ــ تقتل الأمراض التي تنتقل عن طريق البعوض الملايين من البشر سنويا، وتسبب المعاناة لأعداد أكبر كثيراً. ففي عام 2012 تم تسجيل نحو 207 مليون حالة ملاريا، وبلغت الوفيات بين هذه الحالات نحو 267 ألف وفاة. وتُعَد حُمّى الضنك السبب الرئيسي للمرض والوفاة في المناطق الاستوائية وشبه الاستوائية، ويصاب بعدواها 100 مليون شخص في كل عام. وهناك ما يقدر بنحو 200 ألف حالة إصابة بالحمى الصفراء سنويا، تؤدي إلى 30 ألف وفاة في مختلف أنحاء العالم.

لا يتطلب الأمر أكثر من لسعة واحدة من بعوضة حاملة للمرض لنقل عدوى مُنهِكة أو مُهلِكة ــ والبعوض يتناسل ويتكاثر بسرعة مذهلة. ولأنه لا يوجد لقاحات أو علاجات دوائية لأمراض مثل حمى الضنك وفيروس غرب النيل، وبسبب صعوبة الوصول إلى علاجات  لأمراض مثل الملاريا في العديد من المناطق المعرضة للخطر، فإن الحاجة ماسة إلى ابتكار آليات أكثر فعالية للسيطرة على تجمعات البعوض.

والنبأ السار هنا هو أن تكنولوجيا جديدة واعدة أصبحت جاهزة للاختبار الميداني. والأمر متروك الآن للهيئات الحكومية لتسهيل تنمية هذه التكنولوجيا وتطويرها.

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