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Scientists Inject Human Cells Into Pig Embryo To Create First Human-Pig Hybrid





Genetic engineering has always been a subject of great debate. Ever since the cloning of Dolly the sheep, the first species to be replicated in a laboratory, people have been divided about the ethics behind trying to 'play God.’ There are those who believe these creations are necessary for the advancement of science and for the overall betterment of humanity, but critics of these methods feel that this interference with the laws of nature will have far-reaching repercussions on mankind.
The recent story as reported in Science Alert about the creation of the first pig-human hybrids is sure to be the starter of many animated discussions. Human cells were successfully grown inside pig embryos which were in the early stage of development. These embryos that were grown in a laboratory by researchers in the US, developed into a new hybrid species called chimeras.
The name chimera is derived from the monstrous fire-breathing creature in Greek Mythology. This hybrid creature had the parts of more than one animal, the head of a lion, a goat's body and a serpent's tale. Chimera also means something that is difficult to achieve, a figment of the imagination. This probably explains why scientists zeroed in on this name for this new species.
As reported by National Geographic, chimeras can be created either by introducing the organs of one animal into another or by introducing the cells of one animal into the embryo of another animal at the earliest stage of development. The cells gradually become a part of the embryo and a hybrid develops. Transplanting organs between species is very risky as the host body may reject the organ, often leading to death.


To create these hybrids, human stem cells were injected into embryos of pigs in the early stages of development by the researchers involved in the experiment. These hybrid embryos were then inserted into surrogate sows. Scientists were able to create more than 150 chimeras from these embryos.
The researchers observed that in the first trimester the embryos had developed the precursors of organs like the heart and liver. A small number of human cells were also present in these embryos – approximately 1 in10,000.
Although the experiment involving human pig embryo is at a very nascent stage, scientists seem to be quite upbeat about this development, which they feel will be responsible for saving numerous lives. They believe that this is a small step towards the creation of human organs in the laboratory – something that patients on the waiting list for an organ transplant will benefit from.
Team member Juan Carlos Izpisua Belmonte says “The ultimate goal of chimeric research is to learn whether we can use stem-cell and gene-editing technologies to generate genetically-matched human tissues and organs, and we are very optimistic that continued work will lead to eventual success.” He added, “But in the process, we are gaining a better understanding of species evolution as well as human embryogenesis and disease that is difficult to get in other ways.”
With the rampant rise of new diseases every day and the mortality of the population at stake, there is no doubt that scientists need to come out with new methods of technological advancements. However, the question of the ethics behind these advancements will always hang in the air.
To this end, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) had also implemented a ban on experiments involving human chimera. During the experiment, the pig-human embryos were terminated after 28 days of development to avoid any further controversy behind the ethics.

However, with more people in favor of finding new means to combat critical diseases, especially in the light of the rising number of people succumbing because of the unavailability of an organ, the NIH is having a rethink about the moratorium imposed on a human chimera.
Scientists Inject Human Cells Into Pig Embryo To Create First Human-Pig Hybrid Scientists Inject Human Cells Into Pig Embryo To Create First Human-Pig Hybrid Reviewed by Tyler on January 08, 2019 Rating: 5

8 comments

  1. stop making bullshit stories like this, that's why people don't believe in science. and start believing earth its flat, vaccines causes autism and all that crap.

    by making stupid stories like this, you are making the world ignorant.

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    1. Heymar, what part of this "story" do you not believe? If you'd bother to follow the links all the way to the peer-reviewed journal in which it was published (Cell) or just do a simple search on keywords NIH chimera you'd easily confirm it is true. Or YOU could choose to remain ignorant.

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  2. This is wrong on so many levels!!!! I am sure our Alien forefathers would be cringing at our technological genius! On the gogo stick of wrongness!

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  3. - 'Fascinating story, thanks for posting it. It will upset people with fairly conventional minds, but for explorers it thrills with possibilities of generating rescue cells that will cure many human diseases.
    - If we are really brave, we'll also dare to consider much more engaged combination of human and other animal tissue. I mean, we normally take for granted that our human body is 'perfect as it is', but that ignores innumerable defects we suffer but could eliminate.

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    1. Perhaps prevention would be less cruel than subjecting sentient beings to experimentation. Preventing preventable diseases should be the first line of attack. Holistic medicine, the second. We're always looking for magic bullets, but they come with side effects and possibly worse repercussions. Science should be about being humane and doing no harm or the least possible harm. And with all our science and technology . . .we've gone down the rabbit hole to environmental degradation which will lead to more disease and pathology for humans and animals. We are the environment. Harm one harm all. You don't need a PhD to know that all things are connected. Oye!

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    2. Love your comment. There seems to be no concern that this is a living creature and we have no idea of what level of self awareness it would possess. I agree we need to find prevention, but that would mean less profit for the fast food, and General Mills and Big Pharma. So, hopefully this does not succeed on a huge scale. It seems awful.

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  4. Finally we can have Spider-Man fr now

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  5. πŸ˜²πŸ€”πŸ˜•πŸ€¨πŸ˜ΆπŸ˜Ά

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