CRISPR used to create embryo of first ‘super horse’

horses

Researchers in Argentina have produced what is believed to be the world’s first genetically edited horse embryo.

The team worked with cloned embryos using CRISPR/Cas9 technology, which enables scientists to edit portions of the DNA sequence precisely, to try to knock out the myostatin gene (MSTN), which negatively regulates muscle mass development.

The gene has previously been studied and edited in other mammals, particularly with a view to increase meat production in cattle, sheep, goats and pigs and to enhance sports performance in dogs.

Previous work on a natural mutation in the gene in horses had suggested that MSTN expression levels could affect performance ability, giving faster horses for shorter distances when there was lower MSTN expression.

ADVERTISEMENT

While cloning of horses has already become widespread, there have not been examples of genetic modification in horses to date, and the researchers suggest the two techniques could be successfully combined to create what would essentially be bespoke foals.

Follow the latest news and policy debates on agricultural biotech and biomedicine? Subscribe to our newsletter.

The study’s authors added that in the future, the main applications for genetic modification in horses would be likely to focus on “disease resistance, genetic disease reversion and sportive performance improvement”.

The successful research concluded that CRISPR/Cas9 had proved an “efficient method to edit the horse genome” with “high specificity”

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Read the original post

Outbreak Daily Digest
Biotech Facts & Fallacies
GLP Podcasts
Infographic: Here’s where GM crops are grown around the world today

Infographic: Here’s where GM crops are grown around the world today

Do you know where biotech crops are grown in the world? This updated ISAAA infographics show where biotech crops were ...
News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.
glp menu logo outlined

Newsletter Subscription

* indicates required
Email Lists
Send this to a friend