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SCI/TECH: First Disease Resistant Transgenic Cows Produced

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posted on Apr, 4 2005 @ 02:39 PM
Researchers in the US have produced the first transgenic cows that are resistant to disease. Other animals, such as sheep and chicken, have previously been succesful in having similar alterations. The cows have a bacterial gene inserted into them that allows them to produce a protein that confers resistance to a bacterium that lowers milk prodcution.
Technological advances that make it possible to collect more milk also make mastitis harder to contain. "We've increased their yield with the milking machine, which spreads infections from cow to cow," explains Andrew Biggs an expert on mastitis at the Vale Veterinary Centre in Tiverton, Devon, UK.
One bacterium that commonly causes mastitis, Staphylococcus aureus, is notoriously resistant to treatment: only 15% of infections are cleared up by antibiotics. The medications often fail to fully penetrate the mammary glands, leaving the surviving bacteria to wreak havoc yet again.
To solve this problem, a team of US researchers turned to genetic engineering. They introduced a gene from the related bacterium S. simulans into the DNA of Jersey cows. This allows them to produce a protein, normally created by S. simulans, that kills S. aureus.

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

The US is still leading the way in genetic research I suppose, but how long before restrictions on equipotent cells catches up to the US?

This article was intersting in many obvious ways, but also because it shows how the market motivation results in scientific progress and the betterment of the population. Milk is a great food source. Some have said that the US dominated the olympics in the early years simply because it had a large population where things like milk meat and vitamins were widely, cheaply, and consistently available. Now this genetic engineering can potentially allow more milk to be collected and thus can drive down the prices of milk, not just in the US but in any country that is able to do this work. Some might caution that they'd have to pay for the techonology, however, this is, in a sense, ground breaking technology, and science, generally, operates at its best in an open access sort of medium. Even if this technique was patented, the basic research has been done and other scientists can build upon it.

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posted on Apr, 4 2005 @ 02:40 PM
Genetic Mods should be open-sourced. It's just a much less risky way of doing business, we should not give these conglomerates anymore power then they already have.

posted on Apr, 4 2005 @ 02:46 PM
Thats the thing, this is open source. Most biotechnology research is open source. On the other hand, without the ability to turn a profit from the tech and respect property rights, there's no motivation for investment. Using government funding of course is a good way to balance that out, but it brings in its own 'baggage' what with poltical considerations of various techonologies.

An amish politician (hypothetically) wouldn't vote to fund research in zippers for pants, because he's personally opposed to it and the amish people are opposed to it also. Similarly, some polticians will oppose stem cell research, or any biotech research, beacause they and the people are opposed to it. Meanwhile everyone's pants keep falling down. Or something.

posted on Apr, 4 2005 @ 02:57 PM
I cant decide wether GM food is good or not. On one hand it is great but on the other it is not natural.

posted on Apr, 4 2005 @ 03:34 PM

Thats the thing, this is open source. Most biotechnology research is open source.

Tell that to Monsanto.

Most biotechnology research is open source.

Show me the GPL Licenses... I doubt that fact very highly... but I am open to be proven wrong...

On the other hand, without the ability to turn a profit from the tech and respect property rights, there's no motivation for investment.

Open Source doesn't automatically mean Non-Profit... and Money is NOT the primary motivating factor of Humanity you know that? In a Capitolist First society it is the most visible and obvious, but not the only way.

I see and understand what you're trying to get at, but there are some statements you really need to elaborate on(the ones I quoted).

posted on Apr, 5 2005 @ 11:41 AM
I'm not claiming to have done a study of all biotech research and be able to definitively seperate it into private corporate work and public work, but the basis for biotech research is in the public scientific journals. Specific techniques and such are done via corporations, which of course make their products available anyway.

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