Stanford University Is Creating Human-Sheep Hybrids for Organ Transplant

Chimera, Wiki
Scientists at Stanford University grew embryos containing mostly sheep cells and 0.01% in human cells, creating a human-sheep hybrid, paving the way for organs to be grown in animals for transplant in humans. The next step is to implant human stem cells into sheep embryos which have been genetically modified so they cannot grow a pancreas, in the hope that human DNA will fill in the missing code. Critics warn that humans will likely reject the organs because the blood vessels will be sheep-derived, which will trigger the immune system to reject the organ. [If the critics are right and the organs will be rejected, what is the purpose of human hybrids?]

Human-sheep hybrids have been created by scientists for the first time, opening the door to organs being grown inside the farmyard animals for use in transplants or to cure diabetes.

A team at Stanford University successfully grew embryos inside a surrogate for three weeks which had both sheep and human cells.

It is the first stage towards growing an unlimited supply of human organs for transplants and even providing a cure for Type 1 diabetes.

The next step is to implant human stem cells into sheep embryos which have been genetically modified so they cannot grow a pancreas, in the hope that human DNA will fill in the missing code.

If successful a human pancreas should appear inside the animal’s body. The team is about to apply for permission from regulators to lengthen their experiment to 70 days to see if the human cells really can create an organ.

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