How scientists and Google are engaging in a war of the sexes to battle Zika

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Three times a week, on a quiet block of Stock Island on the Florida Keys, 25,000 of the world`s deadliest creatures are released into the wild.
Not to fear.
While these are mosquitoes — the creature responsible for more human deaths each year than any other on the planet — they`re all males: It`s only the females that bite.
And if they do their jobs, these male mosquitoes will contribute to a significant suppression of the female bugs that do bite—and, more importantly, spread disease.
"This is a very robust mosquito that is causing crazy diseases that are very impactful on people`s lives," said Andrea Leal, executive director of the Florida Keys Mosquito Control District.
"Aedes aegypti is the most difficult mosquito to control.
" The Aedes aegypti mosquito is responsible for spreading diseases like dengue fever, chikungunya, yellow fever, and, most recently, Zika.
It`s not the deadliest of all the mosquitoes—that title goes to the species that carry malaria—but it`s causing the most grief here in the United States.
Through traditional methods, including aerial and on-the-ground spraying of pesticides and very intense vigilance, the Florida Keys Mosquito Control District has been able to reduce the population of Aedes aegypti by 60 percent or more, Leal said.
To do that, the district spends about 10 percent of its $10 million annual budget on that one mosquito.
But, Leal said, that level of suppression isn`t enough; they`re aiming for 90 percent.
"One mosquito out there could be the means of transmitting diseases to multiple people," she said.

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