The Phoenix

Thursday, January 12, 2006

You Light Up My...Pig?

You know what farmers really need these days? Bug or disease resistant crops? Nope. Better technology? Nope. More government support? Nope. They need...

Green-Florescent Pigs.

Scientists in Taiwan have bred three pigs that glow in the dark. They claim that while other researchers have bred partly fluorescent pigs, theirs are the only pigs in the world which are green through and through. Yup, that's right, even their hearts and internal organs are green. I wonder if their poop is green too.

The pigs are transgenic, created by adding genetic material from jellyfish into a normal pig embryo. DNA from jellyfish was added to about 265 pig embryos which were implanted in eight different pigs. Four of the pigs became pregnant and three male piglets were born three months ago.

The researchers hope the pigs will boost the island's stem cell research, as well as helping with the study of human disease, said Wu Shinn-Chih of the National Taiwan University’s Institute and Department of Animal Science and Technology. The scientists will use the transgenic pigs to study human disease. Because the pig's genetic material is florescent green, it is easy to spot. So if, for example, some of its stem cells are injected into another animal, scientists can track how they develop without the need for a biopsy or invasive test.

In daylight, the pigs have a light green tint to them. Will you eat green eggs and ham? Their skin, eyes, teeth - everything is green. In the dark, shine a blue light on them and they are bright enough to light up any farm. I wonder if the normal pigs are freaked out being around a fellow glow-in-the-dark hog.

Researchers say that although the pigs glow, they are otherwise no different from any others. Riiiiight...so other than the fact that these pigs look like Satan's playthings, they are normal.

Taiwan is not claiming a world first. Others have bred partially fluorescent pigs before. But the researchers insist the three pigs they have produced are better. In fact, breeding florescent animals is not a new concept. In 2002, Taiwan was home to the first transgenic glowing fish. You can buy GloFish in almost every state except California at this time.

These Taiwaneese glow pigs, however, are not for consumers. The scientists say they hope the new, green pigs will mate with ordinary female pigs to create a new generation - much greater numbers of transgenic pigs for use in research.

Could you imagine creating other glow in the dark animals? How about a glow in the dark rabbit? Perfect for magic shows. You could also inject the jellyfish DNA into wild deer populations. Perhaps car accidents involving deer could be greatly reduced if the deer were able to glow in the dark! Hunters could now go hunting at night too...doesn't that sound safe? How about man's best friend? Wouldn't a glow in the dark Daschaund just be SO cute? I'm hoping they can also alter it's DNA to give the dog horns, wings, and maybe a giant lobster claw. Now THAT would be cool!



"Th'-th'-th'-th'-th'-th'-that's All, Folks!"

30 Comments:

Blogger angel, jr. said...

I'm going to say WTF and Why?

1/12/2006 11:38 AM  
Blogger Laurie said...

Why oh why??

I like the Green Eggs and Ham theory, LOL

1/12/2006 12:13 PM  
Blogger Ben Heller said...

Great but scary post.

But this isn't new. Green body pigmentation has been used for many years to great effect by the famous Dr. D. Banner.

And we all know what he became when angered........

1/12/2006 12:40 PM  
Blogger Ben Heller said...

The Incredible Hulk

1/12/2006 12:41 PM  
Blogger KC said...

If they can make party-colored pigs and you suggest that they give dogs wings and horns, why can't they make a kitten that never gets as large as a cat? I want a miniature cat! Phoenix, tell some of your scientist friends to start creating cute little lap-cats the size of kittens. Please.

1/12/2006 12:45 PM  
Blogger Sherri said...

Hmmm.... perhaps if they put that much time and research toward something, like, cancer, we could come up with a cure.

1/12/2006 1:10 PM  
Anonymous the weirdgirl said...

That's sounds like a sucky life; born green only to made sick so you could study disease. And that pig Babe thought he had it bad!

I know, why don't we make glow-in-the-dark humans so we can reduce our power consumption? Saves on lightbulbs!

1/12/2006 1:35 PM  
Blogger Jamie Dawn said...

Oh, the possibilities!
I wonder if green is the only available color?
I'd like to place my order now for a hot pink poodle.

1/12/2006 1:38 PM  
Blogger Jim said...

I can glow in the dark, but only part of me, and I have to...oh, never mind.

does this mean that footballs will be easier to see during night games, think of the energy that could be saved by dimming the lights.

1/12/2006 1:59 PM  
Blogger The Phoenix said...

I love glow in the dark stuff - frisbees, footballs, those cool plastic stars you can stick on the ceiling.

But animals? I understand the leaps and bounds they can make in genetic/stem cell research - hopefully helping find cures for diseases such as cancer.

At the same time, it just seems all very bizzare. Imagine glow in the dark chickens and cows...would you eat a glow in the dark hamburger or chicken fingers?

Yuck.

1/12/2006 2:18 PM  
Blogger BrianAlt said...

I'm with Jim. Let's make parts of our bodies glow-in-the-dark. You know, just certain parts. Good for night games.

1/12/2006 2:45 PM  
Blogger :P fuzzbox said...

Laws should be passed in advance before this technology is sold to consumers. There could be a serious escalation of animal molestation in certain parts of the country. The easier it is to find the beast the greater the chance for beasiality perverts.

1/12/2006 2:48 PM  
Blogger The Phoenix said...

Having sex with glow in the dark goats wasn't one of the night games I was thinking about.

I was thinking more about dodgeball. Get glow in the dark balls, people are gloing in the dark - it would be a lot of fun.

1/12/2006 2:52 PM  
Blogger Andrew said...

You'd have to be careful if you ate some ham ... go out to a nightclub and the 'black lights' would set you right off.

1/12/2006 2:56 PM  
Blogger Bruce said...

Hmmm.... perhaps if they put that much time and research toward something, like, cancer, we could come up with a cure.

It'll never happen, because it makes too much sense.

1/12/2006 3:29 PM  
Blogger Jim said...

glow in the dark rats so they won't need street lights in New York City.

glow in the dark armadillos as speed bumps on Texas highways.

glow in the dark fruit flies in Hollywood so you can find their navels.*

*"You can take all the sincerity in Hollywood, place it in the navel of a fruit fly and still have room enough for three caraway seeds and a producer's heart." the late Fred Allen

1/12/2006 4:04 PM  
Blogger siren said...

I bet these pigs would be a hit on St. Patty's Day in Chicago!

1/12/2006 4:08 PM  
Blogger kim said...

Creeeepy. Pointing out once again, that just because we CAN do it, doesn't mean we SHOULD do it.

1/12/2006 4:32 PM  
Blogger Laura:) said...

Phoenix, GREAT BLOG!!!!! Very interesting. I seem to be the only one who thinks this is a GREAT! Stuff like this WILL help us with finding the cure to cancer and maybe cures to other diseases.

This is the future. I believe it will lead to a longer and healthier lifespan.

1/12/2006 7:11 PM  
Blogger David Amulet said...

I think they should make humans glow. Would cut down on sneak-up assault and battery, at least ...

-- david

1/12/2006 7:17 PM  
Blogger Keshi said...

OMG when did this happen? I thought such things happen only when Pigs start boarding Qantas lol!

Green eggs..eww! How abt green bacon? yukkk! :):)


Keshi.

1/12/2006 8:45 PM  
Blogger Anhoni Patel said...

yeah, they created the Green-Florescent Pigs. and right after they're going to slaughter them and eat them.

1/12/2006 10:00 PM  
Blogger RT said...

Yeah right. Like the 'researchers' aren't going to glow after munching on those mountain oysters...

Great way to weed out the real vegetarians from the ones that just claim to be, if you ask me.

1/13/2006 1:05 AM  
Blogger ziggystardust73 said...

fluoro-pigs. I want one as a pet.

1/13/2006 3:30 AM  
Blogger Stacy The Peanut Queen said...

Sad that they actually spend money on something like this....

1/13/2006 6:45 AM  
Blogger cube said...

Pork is not just the other white meat anymore... the only neon meat.

1/13/2006 7:04 AM  
Blogger The Phoenix said...

Mountain Oysters...or in this case, you can call them Glow Balls

1/13/2006 7:36 AM  
Blogger Mojotek said...

Wow... now if only we could get a better start on building "SkyNET". That way we'd be that much closer to 'Terminator meets The Incredible Hulk"!

Aww damn... Ben Heller already said Hulk.

1/13/2006 8:39 AM  
Blogger Kid Jacque said...

That is just wrong...

1/13/2006 12:46 PM  
Anonymous Darksky Alaskan Malamutes said...

Yes that sure is true. BTW did you see my new pup from Darksky Alaskan Malamutes? He's a real spunk.
Have a great one

George

6/30/2006 7:26 AM  

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