John D. Mumford's research while affiliated with Imperial College London and other places

Publications (12)

Article
Full-text available
Building on an exercise that identified potential harms from simulated investigational releases of a population suppression gene drive for malaria vector control, a series of online workshops identified nine recommendations to advance future environmental risk assessment of gene drive applications.
Article
Fisheries management needs to ensure that resources are exploited sustainably, and the risk of depletion is at an acceptable level. However, often uncertainty about resource dynamics exists, and data availability may differ substantially between fish stocks. This situation can be addressed through tiered systems, where tiers represent different dat...
Article
Full-text available
Moderately data-limited fisheries can be managed with simple empirical management procedures without analytical stock assessments. Often, control rules adjust advised catches by the trend of an abundance index. We explored an alternative approach where a relative harvest rate, defined by the catch relative to a biomass index, is used and the target...
Article
Full-text available
The ability to engineer gene drives (genetic elements that bias their own inheritance) has sparked enthusiasm and concerns. Engineered gene drives could potentially be used to address long-standing challenges in the control of insect disease vectors, agricultural pests and invasive species, or help to rescue endangered species. However, risk concer...
Article
Many management bodies require applying the precautionary approach when managing marine fisheries resources to achieve sustainability and avoid exceeding limits. For data-limited stocks, however, defining and achieving management objectives can be difficult. Management procedures can be optimized towards specific management objectives with genetic...
Article
Risk assessors, risk managers, developers, potential applicants, and other stakeholders at many levels discuss the need for new or further risk assessment guidance for deliberate environmental releases of gene drive-modified organisms. However, preparing useful and practical guidance entails challenges, to which we offer recommendations based on ou...
Article
Full-text available
Potential future application of engineered gene drives (GDs), which bias their own inheritance and can spread genetic modifications in wild target populations, has sparked both enthusiasm and concern. Engineered GDs in insects could potentially be used to address long-standing challenges in control of disease vectors, agricultural pests and invasiv...
Article
Full-text available
Background Population suppression gene drive has been proposed as a strategy for malaria vector control. A CRISPR-Cas9-based transgene homing at the doublesex locus ( dsxF CRISPRh ) has recently been shown to increase rapidly in frequency in, and suppress, caged laboratory populations of the malaria mosquito vector Anopheles gambiae . Here, problem...
Article
Many data-limited fish stocks worldwide require management advice. Simple empirical management procedures have been used to manage data-limited fisheries but do not necessarily ensure compliance with maximum sustainable yield objectives and precautionary principles. Genetic algorithms are efficient optimization procedures for which the objectives a...
Article
Full-text available
Advances in molecular and synthetic biology are enabling the engineering of gene drives in insects for disease vector/pest control. Engineered gene drives (that bias their own inheritance) can be designed either to suppress interbreeding target populations or modify them with a new genotype. Depending on the engineered gene drive system, theoretica...

Citations

... In this step, relevant protection goals are identified and plausible pathways (i.e., causal chains of events) through which the release of the geGD insects could harm those protection goals are identified. This allows researchers to formulate risk hypotheses for the consecutive events in the "pathways-to-harm" and to identify the data/information required to subsequently test those hypotheses with the goal of characterizing the risk (Connolly, Mumford et al., 2022). Plausible pathways-to-harm have already been determined for geGD insects using examples including Anopheles gambiae (Diptera: Culicidae) (the GD is designed to reduce malaria transmission in Africa) (Teem et al., 2019;Connolly et al., 2021) and the invasive agricultural pest D. suzukii (the GD is designed to reduce the pest's population in the invaded areas and consequently the damage caused) (Romeis et al., 2020). ...
... In the context of a fisheries management procedure, the elements of a control rule are the tuneable parameters, and the fitness can be measured as the management performance relative to agreed management objectives, such as long-term sustainable exploitation. This can include explicit precautionary considerations (Fischer et al., 2021b), such as the 5% risk limit that is part of the ICES precautionary approach (ICES, 2019(ICES, , 2021d. ...
... However, GDOs also create significant risks for human health, agriculture, the environment, biosafety, biodiversity, and biosecurity [6,7,14,[21][22][23]. (See Table 2.) Because GDOs have not been released into the environment, there are no empirical data pertaining to risks from field releases. Scientists have identified and assessed some of these risks by studying organisms in the laboratory and mathematically modeling ecological and public health effects [7,24,25]. ...
... However, including non-vector species of a complex as part of the defined TO set exceeds the intention to specifically target vectors. Therefore, the definition of TO in ERA of gene drive in species complexes requires more nuanced consideration and further refinement than would be the case for more conventional GMO applications [7,32]. ...
... This allows researchers to formulate risk hypotheses for the consecutive events in the "pathways-to-harm" and to identify the data/information required to subsequently test those hypotheses with the goal of characterizing the risk (Connolly, Mumford et al., 2022). Plausible pathways-to-harm have already been determined for geGD insects using examples including Anopheles gambiae (Diptera: Culicidae) (the GD is designed to reduce malaria transmission in Africa) (Teem et al., 2019;Connolly et al., 2021) and the invasive agricultural pest D. suzukii (the GD is designed to reduce the pest's population in the invaded areas and consequently the damage caused) (Romeis et al., 2020). ...
... ICES is currently in the process of revising its data-limited management framework from 2012 (ICES, 2012) and is replacing methods for category 3 stocks (ICES, 2020(ICES, , 2022. One of the replacement methods is the rfb rule (Fischer et al., 2020(Fischer et al., , 2021a, an indicator-adjusted catch rule in which the catch advice is adjusted by the trend in a relative biomass index and the signal from length data. However, indicator-adjusted catch rules can be problematic because the new advice is directly linked to the previous value, which can induce oscillatory behaviour, restrict flexibility, or react slowly to changes in the stock if the index trend is estimated over several historical years. ...
... A number of engineered GD systems have been developed (L. S. Alphey et al., 2020;Devos et al., 2021). They can be categorized depending on the threshold density at which they must be released into a population in order for the GD to be effective. ...
... Gene drive applications, both as envisaged or in development, are considered to share many of the same biosafety considerations as other genetically modified organisms (GMOs) via the characteristics of transgenesis [7,8] and are thus subject to regulatory oversight and environmental risk assessment (ERA) under biosafety legal frameworks globally (see Box 1). However, unlike the case in other GMOs, gene drive transgenes for vector control are more likely to be designed to disperse beyond immediate release locations and persist for many years in target populations; this makes assessment of ecological risks with a broader scope of spatial and temporal considerations for gene drive applications particularly important [8,9]. ...