Ethically very controversial: researchers create hybrid creatures from human and monkey cells

The team around Juan Carlos Izpisua Belmonte from the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla (California) presents its work in the journal "Cell".

Ethically very controversial: researchers create hybrid creatures from human and monkey cells

The team around Juan Carlos Izpisua Belmonte from the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla (California) presents its work in the journal "Cell". With their study, the scientists built on previous studies in which they had produced mixed embryos from human and pig cells. Very few human cells were integrated into the tissues of the pigs, probably due to the great evolutionary distance between the two species back. < / p> Success in experiments with Javanese monkeys: Mixed creatures produced from human and animal cells

With the Javanese monkeys (Macaca fascicularis), the researchers now chose a closer relative and actually achieved better results. The human-monkey chimeras should not serve as organ suppliers. With their experiments, the researchers want to explore the limits and possibilities of the technique and investigate early development processes in the embryo. For medical applications such as the breeding of organs, the use of pigs would be more appropriate, for economic and ethical reasons, among other reasons. < / p>
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  • < / ul> < p> Stem cell researcher Hans Schöler sees the study as "exciting basic research". However, the actual breeding of organs in such chimera-mixed beings of different species-is still "quite far away", says the director at the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Biomedicine in Münster, who was not involved in the study. < / p> Aspects of animal welfare and the handling of donor cells must be critically examined < p> The production of chimeric blastocysts (early embryostadias) with human cells raises particular ethical questions, write Henry Greely of Stanford University and Nita Farahany of Duke University in a commentary on the study published in "Cell". Finally, the human cells could spread in the developing Embryo and develop into different cell types. Aspects such as animal welfare or the handling of human donor cells should therefore be critically examined. < / p>

    The researchers injected 25 human stem cells, which have the potential to develop into almost all different cell types, into six-day-old monkey embryos. At first all 132 of these embryos grew, after ten days there were still 103. At the end of the study - on day 19 after fertilization - three were still alive.  Merkel announces emergency brake and harvests loud heckling-then it's enough Schäuble FOCUS Online / Wochit Merkel announces emergency brake and harvests loud heckling-then it's enough Schäuble

    kas / dpa
    Updated Date: 01 May 2021, 05:26

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