Interronauts | CSIRO podcast Ep 15: Please no Genie McGene Face, infertile invasive mozzies, and science digest

By Jesse Hawley

20 July 2018

3 minute read

Get your fly swats out (or your sleepy cheeks) because this episode researchers Kate Tepper and Gavin Volpato join Jesse to chat about our project to release sterilised male mosquitoes to drown-out an invasive mozzie species responsible for dengue fever and Zika. We also do a slapdash digest through the last fortnight’s science news, and then speak with Dr Cameron Stewart about the discovery of a vital immunity gene and the parlous quest to have the public name it. Get your single-celled, Wolbachia jokes ready because you’re about to have a ball.


CSIRO news

Why we released millions of mozzies in northern Queensland

“…it was all part of an effort to trial whether specialised technology could reduce populations of the Aedes aegypti, an invasive mosquito capable of spreading diseases like dengue, Zika and chikungunya – it’s one of the world’s most dangerous pests. While final results are still being analysed, we’re chuffed to tell you the initial results show the population of the Aedes aegypti mosquito dropped by more than 80 per cent in just over three months,” from our blog.

Science news

  1. Prenatal depression may be becoming more common
  2. Otzi the 5000+ year old Iceman
  3. Everyday plastics affect brain development in rats
  4. DNA not just from your chromosomes contribute to evolving new species
  5. Sleep may have antioxidant effects, making it so universal
  6. Human origins are more complicated than we thought
  7. The oldest human evidence outside Africa

Interview: Dr Cameron Steward on C6, the nameless gene

“Dr. Stewart is Research Scientist within the Mitigating Invasive Species and Diseases Program of CSIRO Health & Biosecurity, and is based at the CSIRO Australian Animal Health Laboratory (AAHL).” This episode he joins Interronauts to discuss his research with high containment microbes, and his team’s discovery of C6 an immunity gene with no name. Read the blog.

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You can get in touch with the Interronauts team via FacebookTwitter @CSIROnewsInstagram @csirogram, or by emailing us at Thanks for listening!

Kate (left) and Gavin (right) in our podfort for dampening sound before we realised what the true, undisclosable, issue was. Note lounge cushions and partially obscured Pocahontas beach towel.

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