Sunday Reads: Pig and Elephant DNA Just Won’t Splice….Posted: March 29, 2015
Things are still the same here in Banjoville. I am still sick as a dawg, and it is even worse because I am exhausted.
So…the post is what it is this morning, mainly links to stories that I have saved over the last few weeks. Nothing deep or disturbing. ( Unless the images from the children’s books Elephant and Piggie count.)
Title of the post comes from an old South Park episode, like the second or third episode ever.
When the boys visit the South Park Genetic Engineering Ranch in an attempt to cross the DNA of Cartman’s pot-bellied pig Fluffyand Kyle’s Elephant, Dr. Mephesto tells them that doing so is impossible, and that pig and elephant DNA just won’t splice. He then mentions that the 1980s pop rock band ‘Loverboy’, (purportedly) wrote a song about it, which he then performs, with his assistant Kevin acting as a dancer.
Later on, the boys tell Chef about their unsuccessful attempt to create a pot-bellied elephant, and Chef also begins to perform the song, but stops halfway upon realizing that a pot-bellied elephant is a good idea, and tells the boys that since genetic engineering is out of the question, the only way to create one is to get the elephant and Fluffy to make “sweet love.”
Da’n Do-A, pig and elephant D-N-A
just won’t splice!
The reason I thought of this song in the first place?
The idea of bringing extinct animals back to life continues to reside in the realm of science fiction. But scientists have taken a small step closer to that goal, by inserting the DNA of a woolly mammoth into lab-grown elephant cells.
Harvard geneticist George Church and his colleagues used a gene-editing technique known as CRISPR to insert mammoth genes for small ears, subcutaneous fat, and hair length and color into the DNA of elephant skin cells. The work has not yet been published in a scientific journal, and has yet to be reviewed by peers in the field.
Woolly mammoths (Mammuthus primigenius) have been extinct for millennia, with the last of the species dying out about 3,600 years ago. But scientists say it may be possible to bring these and other species back from the grave, through a process known as de-extinction. [Photos: 6 Extinct Animals That Could Be Brought Back to Life]
But we won’t be seeing woolly mammoths prancing around anytime soon, “because there is more work to do,” Church told U.K.’s The Times, according to Popular Science. “But we plan to do so,” Church added.
Splicing mammoth DNA into elephant cells is only the first step in a lengthy process, Church said. Next, they need to find a way to turn the hybrid cells into specialized tissues, to see if they produce the right traits. For instance, the researchers need to make sure the mammoth genes produce hair of the right color and texture.
After that, the team plans to grow the hybrid cells in an artificial womb; scientists and animal-rights advocates have deemed it unethical to grow them in a living elephant’s womb.
The best part of this is the next few paragraphs. Go to the link to read the plans for the mammoths after they are bred, I mean spliced.
Other cool news: Costa Rica is now running completely on renewable energy – Quartz
Costa Rica is running without having to burn a single fossil fuel, and it’s been doing so for 75 straight days.
Thanks to some heavy rainfall this year, Costa Rica’s hydropower plants alone are generating nearly enough electricity to power the entire country. With a boost from geothermal, solar, and wind energy sources, the country doesn’t need an ounce of coal or petroleum to keep the lights on. Of course, the country has a lot of things going in its favor. Costa Rica is a small nation, has less than 5 million people, doesn’t have much of a manufacturing industry that would require a lot of energy, and is filled with volcanoes and other topographical features that lend themselves to renewable energy.
Sticking with science, and a bit of common fucking sense: Babies at risk from breast milk bought over internet – Health News – Health & Families – The Independent
Seriously? I mean who would feed their baby something bought like this? I just….have no words.
So you go from people feeding their babies breast milk they get online, to moms beating up on their kid’s bullies.
Innit that an awesome ad? More info at the link.
Read the story at the link, there is video too.
Now, have a good day, I am waiting to hear back from doctor. Take care…
This is an open thread.