Thursday, January 12, 2006

Transgenic GlowPigs

The team from Taiwan, where the world's first genetically engineered fluorescent fish were created in 2003, injected a protein extracted from jelly fish into the nucleus of a pig embryo to breed three male transgenic pigs, said Professor Wu Shinn-Chih, of National Taiwan University's Institute and Department of Animal Science and Technology.

"Yes, this is really important. It should be helpful in the acceleration of clinical research of human stem cells as it is generally believed that physically pigs are among the animals which are most similar to human beings," he told AFP.

"I'm not sure if there are fluorescent green pigs elsewhere in the world, but so far, in the photos available in the field, I have never seen such pigs, whose whole bodies can glow green in the dark," Wu said.

Wu dismissed concerns that the technology could endanger the ecosystem.

"There is no need to worry about that because, unlike fish, the confined green pigs have no way to crossbreed with wild species and produce 'Frankenpigs'," he said.

And green pigs might fly



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