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Posts Tagged ‘Genetic’

Science: Little Pigs Made To Glow Green… A Big Advancement In Genetic Science (Video)

Alright, you didn’t have to pay attention in school for too long to learn about gene transfer. In fact, every few episodes of Law & Order: SVU is going to involve some complex DNA evidence presented by the medical examiner, right? But could we actually see evidence of DNA? And can we use it for some science other than criminology or for something other than ‘Maury’ episodes?

Answer: Yes.

Scientists in Guangdong Province, Southern China, have created piglets that glow green under a black-light. The glow is caused by a fluorescent protein from jellyfish DNA that was transferred into the embryos within the sow, as a marker to show that the transfer of genetic material had been successful… The long-term aim of the research goal is to introduce beneficial genes into larger animals as a means of creating less costly and more efficient medicines.

Shout out to GizMag for really going ‘ham’ (yeah, did that) with the scientific explanations. But Dr. Stefan Moisyadi, Associate Professor at the Institute for Biogenesis Research (IBR), related the short and sweet practical applications: For doctors to treat patients with blood disorders like hemophilia, it is much (cheaper) to just produce the needed enzymes in animals’ blood than it is to build a factory and harvest them as is done today. Put the ‘formula’ into animals’ DNA and let nature’s factory produce and reproduce them. Done. And animal activists, worry not. The creators of the IBR technique is touting that there will no impact on the animals’ lifespan or quality of life.

Watch the video demo above. And just try not to think ‘Green Eggs and Ham’ (you will… can’t be helped). Good science, as long as the pigs don’t go Bruce Banner on us. The Incredible Pork. Okay, okay. The jokes stop if you watch.


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Technology: Criminals Caught In the DNA Fog (Video)

Impeccable timing! I read about ‘DNA Fog’ a while ago in Businessweek, and now there’s a YouTube video on it.

Law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and the U.K. will have a new crime-fighting weapon at their disposal. Ever watched Law & Order, CSI, or some other crime drama series? Then you know a bit about how DNA might be gathered and used to catch criminals. Looks pretty complicated, right? And ‘smart’ criminals always seem to know not to leave DNA behind. Well, Applied DNA Sciences touts that its DNA Fog will thwart criminals’ efforts to get away or get away with it in court. The company’s tech rapidly fills a room/area with a fog that may confuse a robber or batterer… but the big innovation has to do with forensics. Criminals will have a much harder time raising reasonable doubt because the fog also genetically marks them, covering them with DNA evidence. The DNA Fog’s genetic material sticks tenaciously to clothes and skin and won’t wash out or off for weeks. The Fog will be uniquely customized for a location using it, so that a simple test will reveal that an offender was at a particular crime scene when the Fog was sprayed. Genius!


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