Gene Drive Research Forum

The Gene Drive Research Forum brings together gene drive-interested stakeholders from research, government, non-profit organizations, for-profit companies, and other parties that support safe and ethical conduct of gene drive research for applications in public health, conservation, and agriculture. The Forum meets periodically to discuss the status and challenges of gene drive research, and identify areas of potential mutual interest where collaboration, coordination and cooperation among stakeholders will move the field forward in a positive manner. The FNIH works with Forum participants to co-organize and co-host Forum meetings and workshops. In addition, the FNIH works with Forum participants on working group activities in the areas of data sharing, transparency, regulatory capacity strengthening, as well as technical and research capacity strengthening.

Initially, the Forum brought together representatives from organizations funding or otherwise supporting gene drive research projects to develop a response to the 2016 National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine report, titled “Gene Drive on the Horizon: Advancing Science, Navigating Uncertainty, and Aligning Research with Public Values”, which highlighted the need for funders and researchers to work together to ensure the safe conduct of research in this area. In response to this report, sponsors and supporters of gene drive research collaborated to publish a set of Guiding Principles. The developers and signatories of these Guiding Principles are committed to mobilizing and facilitating progress in gene drive research by supporting efforts of the highest scientific and ethical quality, inspiring a transparent approach and backing biosafety measures. For more information and to learn how to become a signatory of the Guiding Principles, click here.

At the 2018 meeting, participants decided that future forum meetings should routinely include researchers.


  • To organize and facilitate activities across a wide range of gene drive-interested stakeholders from research, government, not-for-profit organizations, for-profit companies and other parties with interest in gene drive research for public health, conservation and agriculture applications.

Results & Accomplishments


October 31-November 1, 2019, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Purpose: To discuss common challenges related to gene drive nomenclature, research registries and data sharing among stakeholder participants.
Co-hosts: African Union Development Agency (AUDA-NEPAD) and FNIH


September 11-13, 2018, Montréal, Canada
To enable in-person interactions and networking among the gene drive researcher and research sponsor/supporter communities and to facilitate discussions on areas of mutual interest.
Co-hosts: Canadian Institutes of Health Research and FNIH

Summary Report

December 7, 2017, Welcome Trust Offices, London, UK
Purpose: To begin operationalizing the Guiding Principles for sponsors and supporters of gene drive research by identifying areas of mutual interest to work collectively.
Co-hosts: FNIH and Wellcome Trust

Summary Report

March 22, 2017, Washington, D.C., USA
Purpose: To discuss the status and challenges of gene drive research, potential areas of mutual interest and the possibility of creating a mechanism to continue discussions and facilitate coordination and cooperation.
Co-hosts: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, FNIH and Wellcome Trust

Summary Report

Scientific Publications

Principles for gene drive research. Emerson C, James S, Littler K, Randazzo FF. Science. 2017 Dec 1;358(6367):1135-1136.


FNIH Announcement (Nov. 30, 2017): Science Publishes Guiding Principles for Sponsors and Supporters of Gene Drive Research


Private-Sector Partners
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation*
Wellcome Trust
*Provided financial or in-kind support for this program.

FNIH Contact