Saturday February 04, 2017
No longer a myth: a part human, part pig chimera
more stories from this episode
- Nature vs. nurture: lessons from twins
- Torture doesn't work and here's the scientific evidence
- No longer a myth: a part human, part pig chimera
- 38-thousand year old rock art has a lot in common with Monet
- Metallic hydrogen. Did it finally happen?
- Quirks & Questions: Is Earth getting heavier or lighter?
- Full Episode
Scientists have created the first human-pig chimera. The team used stem cells from humans and inserted them into pig blastocytes, which in turn were implanted into pigs to create embryos that were part human, part pig.
Scientists let the embryos develop for a few weeks before they were terminated. This is a highly controversial area of study and had to be privately funded. In the U.S. you can't do this kind of research with public money.
Dr. Jun Wu is a stem cell biologist and staff scientist at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. He was the lead author of this study published in a recent issue of the journal Cell. He hopes to further develop his technique to one day grow human organs inside pigs. He believes this will help address the global organ shortage.
- Research Paper in Cell: Interspecies Chimerism with Mammalian Pluripotent Stem Cells
- Quirks & Quarks: 3D Printing Revolution