Technology Two Pigs with Monkey Cells Born in China
Cholera kills over 27,000 pigs in Indonesia
More than 27,000 pigs have died in a hog-cholera epidemic that has struck Indonesia, with thousands more at risk, an animal welfare official said. Previously, lab tests found that the animals died of hog cholera but officials said they are also testing to see if any were infected with African swine fever. Neither are believed to pose a risk to humans.In 2017, a hog cholera outbreak in Indonesia's East Nusa Tenggara province killed more than 10,000 pigs, causing severe financial losses for local farmers.
- In China, two were born after researchers genetically modified cynomolgus monkey cells in vitro. The research was published in the scientific journal
- After just a week, the (and their eight regular pig siblings) died of unknown causes.
- Researchers at the State Key Laboratory of Stem Cell and Reproductive Biology in Beijing are planning to try this again with more monkey cells. The end goal is to grow human organs inside animals for use in transplants.
For the first time ever, two pigs with monkey cells were born in China after researchers genetically modified cynomolgus monkey cells in culture. The resulting chimera monkey-pigs—which are new animals with cells from the two distinct animals—lived for just a week.
US-born panda Bei Bei arrives in new China home
The US-born giant panda Bei Bei has arrived in southwestern China after a 16-hour flight, with plenty of bamboo for him to munch on as he settled into his new home. Bei Bei was welcomed "home" on Thursday with a ceremony at the Bifengxia Panda Base in Sichuan, local media reported. Fans had lined up at the National Zoo -- the only home Bei Bei had ever known before his return to China -- to bid the cub farewell ahead of his departure.
"This is the first report of full-term pig-monkey chimeras,” Tang Hai, one of the researchers who worked on the pigs at the State Key Laboratory of Stem Cell and Reproductive Biology in Beijing, told
Earlier this year, Japanese scientists got the go-ahead toin a rat, which marks a huge step forward in the study of chimeras, or organisms that possess cells from at least two distinct species. These genetic hybrids are being tested because the end goal is to grow whole human organs inside other animals that can then be transplanted into humans.
In the case of the monkey-pigs, researchers genetically modified the monkey cells in vitro so that they created a protein called GFP. It glowed fluorescent and allowed the scientists to track the monkey cells and any descendent cells. Then, the team was able to isolate embryonic stem cells, which were implanted into the pig embryos five days after fertilization.
A solution for food waste in schools: Give it to the pigs
Maine has decided that eating like a pig could be a good thing, especially for schools looking to cut down on food waste. A law saying schools can give food scraps away to pig farmers is now on the books in the state.
In total, 4,000 of the embryos were implanted in female pigs, or sows. Ten piglets were born thereafter and two of them were chimeric, containing monkey cells. In the chimeras, heart, liver, spleen, lung and skin tissue partly contained monkey cells, though the proportions were low, at between one in 1,000 and one in 10,000.
After just a week, all of the piglets died, regardless of whether or not they were chimeras. The researchers say that although it's unclear why the pigs died, it's likely due to complications of the in vitro fertilization (IVF) process and not the chimerism. That's becausein pigs as it does in humans and other animals.
Next, the research team will try to create healthy animals with an even higher proportion of monkey cells, according to Hai. If that works, they'll try to create pigs that are born with a whole organ composed of primate cells.
French basketball player fined in China for not looking at flag
A French former NBA player has been reprimanded and fined $1,400 by sports officials in China for not looking at the Chinese flag during the national anthem before a game. Yabusele was given a "serious warning" and a 10,000-yuan fine for not looking at the flag as required, the CBA said in a statement on Saturday. Yabusele, who played forward for the Boston Celtics for two seasons before joining the CBA team this year, has not commented on the incident.
Of course, that's easier said than done. Back in 2017, another research team in California, but just about one in every 100,000 cells was human. And, for ethical reasons, the embryos only developed for one month because there was concern that the brains could be part-human.
And then there are the critics. Paul Knoepfler, a stem cell biologist at the University of California, Davis, believes it's impossible to grow human organs suitable for transplant in human-animal chimeras.
"Given the extremely low chimeric efficiency and the deaths of all the animals, I actually see this as fairly discouraging," Knoepfler said.
North Korea seen as weak link as swine fever spreads in Asia .
South Korea is deploying snipers, installing traps and flying drones along its border as it ramps up efforts to stop wild boars from spreading swine fever from rival North Korea. African swine fever, fatal to hogs but no threat to humans, has wiped out pig herds in many Asian countries. Feral hogs are thought to be a main reason for its spread, and North Korea has been snubbing the South's repeated calls for joint quarantine efforts, officials say.
Piglets with monkey DNA born in Chinese lab - TomoNews
BEIJING — These little piggies had some crazy scientists genetically engineer them with a bunch of monkey DNA in China. SOURCES: New Scientist ...
World's first monkey-pig hybrids are born in Chinese lab
Primeiros híbridos macaco-porco do mundo nascem em laboratório chinês Nacen los primeros híbridos de cerdo mono en el laboratorio chino ولادة أول هجين من ...