CRISPR bacon: Gene editing could help supply high-quality pork and eliminate pig castration

thesegene editedpigsareresistanttooneoftheworldsmostcostlyanimaldiseasesprrsvirus creditnorrierussell

It was in June 2019 that the birth of a specific batch of gene-edited piglets was announced to the world. It was a significant step in the quest to achieve commercial production of male pigs that never reach adolescence, and therefore do not need castration to prevent boar taint.

This particular gene edit relates to stopping expression of a gene that triggers the release of hormones necessary for sexual maturation. The gene, called KISS1, is expressed in the pig’s pituitary gland during puberty, and triggers certain cells to mature and begin producing hormones, which propel puberty forward as the animal grows older.

The genetic basis for the hormones that relate to growth and maturation in humans has already been studied extensively, notes Tad Sonstegard, who leads the piglet research and is chief executive and scientific officer at Acceligen, Recombinetics’ agriculture division.

Related article:  This natural defense strategy could help some genes fend off CRISPR edits

To achieve commercial production of male pigs that do not reach adolescence (and therefore do not have boar taint), male pigs obviously need to receive the gene edit from their parents. However, because the parent nucleus stock would also have this gene edit and therefore would stay preadolescent themselves, an effective and efficient way must be found to make both male and female parent stock fertile.

The strategy that will be used here involves supplying an analog of KISS1 to the pigs.

Read the original post

Outbreak
Outbreak Daily Digest
Biotech Facts & Fallacies
Talking Biotech
Genetics Unzipped
ft covidresponseus feature

Video: Viewpoint: The US wrote the global playbook on the coronavirus and then ignored it

A year ago, the United States was regarded as the country best prepared for a pandemic. Our government had spent ...
mag insects image superjumbo v

Disaster interrupted: Which farming system better preserves insect populations: Organic or conventional?

A three-year run of fragmentary Armageddon-like studies had primed the journalism pumps and settled the media framing about the future ...
dead bee desolate city

Are we facing an ‘Insect Apocalypse’ caused by ‘intensive, industrial’ farming and agricultural chemicals? The media say yes; Science says ‘no’

The media call it the “Insect Apocalypse”. In the past three years, the phrase has become an accepted truth of ...
globalmethanebudget globalcarbonproject cropped x

Infographic: Cows cause climate change? Agriculture scientist says ‘belching bovines’ get too much blame

A recent interview by Caroline Stocks, a UK journalist who writes about food, agriculture and the environment, of air quality ...
organic hillside sweet corn x

Organic v conventional using GMOs: Which is the more sustainable farming?

Many consumers spend more for organic food to avoid genetically modified products in part because they believe that “industrial agriculture” ...
benjamin franklin x

Are most GMO safety studies funded by industry?

The assertion that biotech companies do the research and the government just signs off on it is false ...
gmo corn field x

Do GMO Bt (insect-resistant) crops pose a threat to human health or the environment?

Bt is a bacterium found organically in the soil. It is extremely effective in repelling or killing target insects but ...
favicon

Environmental Working Group: EWG challenges safety of GMOs, food pesticide residues

Known by some as the "Environmental Worrying Group," EWG lobbies for tighter GMO legislation and famously puts out annual "dirty dozen" list of fruits and ...
m hansen

Michael Hansen: Architect of Consumers Union ongoing anti-GMO campaign

Michael K. Hansen (born 1956) is thought by critics to be the prime mover behind the ongoing campaign against agricultural biotechnology at Consumer Reports. He is an ...
News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.
Optional. Mail on special occasions.
Send this to a friend