Unpredictability in complex systems

in #blog2 years ago

We cannot understand complex systems, we do not expect that we can control it.


It all started when a bioengineering company called Oxitec released in 2013, 450,000 genetically modified mosquitoes, this British company is mainly engaged in pest control, through genetic engineering that is, instead of insecticides, you genetically modify a bug and so according to them, they can manipulate its proliferation or its extermination, according to them, well a scientific research publication was published last week in Scientific Reports; The finding of a scientist who was monitoring these tests, what this company was trying to deliver 450,000 genetically modified mosquitoes in this region called Jacobin in Brazil, was to see if their genetically modified mosquitoes could end the proliferation of mosquitoes that transmit diseases such as Yellow Fever, Dengue, Chikungunya and Zika; they took Cuban and Mexican varieties of the Aedes Aegypti mosquito, they modified it genetically and released it in Brazil, well the finding of the scientist who is monitoring the tests, says that everything went very wrong, what happened was that when studying the mosquitoes the local population of Jacobina traces of the genes of genetically modified mosquitoes were detected, which is supposed to be impossible because they had been genetically modified so that they were not able to reproduce, thus killing the population of mosquitoes.

What had to happen is that the introduced mosquitoes, those of the Mexican and Cuban variety, had to have disappeared, there were no traces of the 450,000 specimens that were released, only the premises would be left, with their DNA intact because there would be no interacted with the DNA of others because they would not have been able to reproduce and good step as Ian Malcom said in Jurassic Park, "The unpredictability in complex systems" then what do you think, if they could reproduce and there are gene fingerprints of genetically modified mosquitoes in mosquitoes that do not yet exist and continue to reproduce in Brazil and even to be more easily identifiable to genetically altered mosquitoes, they were given a fluorescence gene, among all the decisions that were made I think that was one of the worst.


The concerns are that this mixture of genes from among the three varieties, the original one from Brazil, the Mexican, the Cuban and apart from the genetic alteration, have created individuals with different characteristics, among these characteristics it could be possible that they had resistance to insecticides, accelerated reproduction , transmission of other diseases, adaptability in other climates and stop counting; nobody can assure me that these things cannot happen, resistance to insecticides could be the only worrying thing, but if not, because if in case, mosquito populations are out of control at this time and we suffer from them by the way in that they are vectors of life-threatening diseases such as zica, Chikungunya, Dengue and the Smarilla Fever because the fact that they are less controllable, is very worrying.


The scientist who published these findings in the Scientific Report was worried that although we still have a very poor ability to predict the results of a field study, like this one, we don't think twice before doing so, this is an excellent Practical example of the phrase "like a child looking for his dad's gun from Ian Malcom in Jurassic Park" is like the best example I can think of at the moment.

The most curious thing to say in some way, because it is quite disturbing, is that the spokesperson for Oxitec, the company guilty of all this, was his reaction, was to say publicly we are talking with Nate Research that is the company that produces the publication where These findings were published, they are talking to them so that the article is modified, because it is full of inconsistencies, it is quite “reassuring” that the company that was to blame for this, is publicly accepting that it wants to hide the findings, that it is taking action active legal so that that article is modified, in any way it already came to light, in any way the image of the company is damaged.

This is the same old story, corporations wanting to make money in unethical ways; We have always been curious, dumb and careless, especially when we are on the threshold of discovery, but the difference now is that our tools have never been so powerful, so the potential damage we can do to ourselves is unprecedented, especially because in this particular case the ecosystems are something so complex, the variables are so many that it is virtually impossible to predict a result, so they had to have spent much more time in laboratory studies, before 450 thousand specimens of a strange species, genetically edited, was released miles from the headquarters of Oxitec, (this is worthy of a movie), maybe this has no consequences, maybe if it does; The problem is that it is already done.

Well here, I do not take away more sleep or tranquility ... they are read in the comments.


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