Scientists at the University of California are trying to grow human organs in pigs in order to curb the scarcity of human organs available for transplant.
They combined human stem cells as well as the DNA of pigs, leaving it to culture for about 28 days before putting an end to the experiment.
The experiment resulted in the creation of part-human, part-pig embryos also known as Chimera. The animals will remain their outward appearance as well as characters, but with human organs.
The process involves the use of a Gene-editing technique to remove a DNA from the pig’s embryo.
Pablo Ross, a reproductive biologist who is leading the research told the BBC; “Our hope is that this pig embryo will develop normally but the pancreas will be made almost exclusively out of human cells and could be compatible with a patient for transplantation.”
The United States National Institute of Health however failed to back the innovation. They cited worries that the experiment will somehow get to the pig’s brain, making it act like a human.
The researchers have however reiterated that the pig will not possess human characteristics.
“We think there is very low potential for a human brain to grow, but this is something we will be investigating,” Pablo Ross said.
Others who are skeptical about the experiment are the farm animal welfare organization, Compassion in World Farming. The organization feels the experiment might lead to a surge in the use of pigs for human purposes. This is coming at a time when animal rights activist are pushing for a vegetarian world.
A lot of people in need of organ donation die in the United states before an organ is found. The researchers at the University of California hope to put an end to this life-threatening issue by attempting to grow human organs in pigs.