Some things, like Hollywood plotlines and political speeches, come in tidy little packages. But what’s more tidy than nature’s own package–the egg? The same researchers who brought you Dolly the Sheep (TM) bring you genetically-modified chickens whose eggs (specifically, the whites) carry anti-cancer proteins within them.
“One of the characteristics of lots of medical treatments these days is that they’re very expensive.
“The idea of producing the proteins involved in treatments in flocks of laying hens means they can produce in bulk, they can produce cheaply and indeed the raw material for this production system is quite literally chicken feed.”
Roslin has bred some 500 modified birds. Their existence is the result of more than 15 years’ work by the lead scientist on the project, Dr Helen Sang.
But it could be another five years before patient trials get the go-ahead and 10 years until a medicine is fully developed, the Roslin Institute cautioned.
Does this mean we might be able to take our meds in omelette form? Delicious!