Drover's News

CRISPR Chickens and Other Gene-Editing News

Gene editing technology offers potential for dramatically accelerating genetic improvement in livestock. While more research is needed, these technologies eventually could allow introduction of novel traits such as resistance to specific diseases in cattle.

Gene editing alters an organism’s genome by substituting genes from within that species, in contrast with genetic engineering, using genetic material from other species.

Researchers at the University of California - San Diego (UCSD) recently reported a study using the CRISPR/Cas9-based approach to control genetic inheritance in mice.

The authors say highly efficient “gene drive” systems have recently been developed in insects, which leverage the sequence-targeted DNA cleavage activity of CRISPR–Cas9 and endogenous homology-directed repair mechanisms to convert heterozygous genotypes to homozygosity. Their work is the first to use this “active genetics” approach for applying CRISPR technology in mammals.

In a UCSD article posted on Phys.org, the researchers note that creating such tools in mammals (mice in this case) is more challenging and time consuming than for insects.

UCSD Assistant Professor Kimberly Cooper, PhD, along with graduate student Hannah Grunwald and Assistant Researcher Valentino Gantz published their work, titled Super-Mendelian inheritance mediated by CRISPR–Cas9 in the female mouse germline, in the journal Nature.

"Our motivation was to develop this as a tool for laboratory researchers to control the inheritance of multiple genes in mice," says Cooper in a UCSD release. "With further development we think it will be possible to make animal models of complex human genetic diseases, like arthritis and cancer, that are not currently possible."

In related news, researchers in the UK hope to hatch chicks this spring with genetic resistance to influenza, resulting from gene editing using the CRISPR technique.

 “If we could prevent influenza virus crossing from wild birds into chickens, we would stop the next pandemic at source,” says Wendy Barclay, PhD, a professor of virology at Imperial College London in a recent Reuters article.  Barclay and her group have teamed with the Roslin Institute at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland, known for its 1996 unveiling of “Dolly the sheep”, the world’s first cloned animal.

In earlier research, Barclay’s team found a gene present in chickens called ANP32, which encodes a protein flu viruses need to infect a host. Laboratory tests of the gene-edited cells indicate resistance to the influenza virus.

For more on CRISPR and gene editing, see these articles on BovineVetOnline:

Gene Editing: Potential and Perceptions

USDA Clarifies Gene Editing Oversight

Gene-edited pigs protected from PRRS

 

The following commentary does not necessarily reflect the views of AgWeb or Farm Journal. The opinions expressed below are the author's own.This week, the Council for Agricultural Science and Technolo

The USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is announcing the availability of $1 million in cooperative agreement funding to support animal disease traceability (ADT) and electronic

The JBS Global Food Innovation Center In Honor of Gary & Kay Smith officially opened on the Colorado State University campus Tuesday, April 9, when JBS USA CEO Andre Nogueira cut the ribbon on the $20

USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) State Executive Director Nancy Johner this week announced that emergency grazing of Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) acres is authorized for all Nebraska counties, due

By: Amy Timmerman – Extension Educator and Jim Jansen – Extension EducatorThere are many things on our checklist as we recover from these historic floods and blizzards from the past several day. 

The following commentary does not necessarily reflect the views of AgWeb or Farm Journal. The opinions expressed below are the author's own. Once more, an extensive life cycle analysis (LCA) of the U

A fuller picture is emerging of the environmental footprint of beef in the United States. An Agricultural Research Service (ARS)-led team has completed a comprehensive life-cycle analysis quantifying

 More than 20 years ago, a company called AquaBounty Technologies developed the AquAdvantage salmon, a genetically modified variety of Atlantic salmon with a single gene from a Chinook salmon splic

Several livestock-industry groups encourage stakeholders to join in a petition and submit comments to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) for

The following commentary does not necessarily reflect the views of AgWeb or Farm Journal. The opinions expressed below are the author's own.Zoonotic diseases, such as campylobacteriosis and salmonello

U.S. Senators Michael Bennet (D-CO), John Barrasso (R-WY), and Doug Jones (D-AL) today reintroduced bipartisan legislation to increase wildlife managers’ ability to keep wildlife healthy.“Transmis

Cows and bulls searching for “moo love” now have a mobile app to help their breeders.A U.K. farming startup introduced a Tinder-style app, called Tudder, that lets farmers find breeding matches by

A proposed set of legislative goals released by a pair of Democratic freshmen members of Congress mentions getting fewer emissions from “farting cows,” but they want to work with farmers, too. The

A petition has been submitted by a group of organizations representing livestock haulers and producers who would be impacted by ongoing hours of service rules.The joint petition was filed on Feb. 6 by

Zinpro Corporation is proud to announce that Chris Reinhardt, PhD, – among the world’s most prominent authorities on nutrition, management and heat stress in feedlot cattle – has joined the comp

Gene editing technology offers potential for dramatically accelerating genetic improvement in livestock. While more research is needed, these technologies eventually could allow introduction of novel

The longest federal government shutdown in U.S. history affected an investigation into a strain of bovine tuberculosis in a North Dakota beef cattle herd, say state officials who have so far have shou

For years we’ve all seen the figure from the 2006 report from the UN’s Food and Agricultural Organization, “Livestock’s Long Shadow,” saying livestock production accounts for 18% of global g

As 2018 draws to a close, the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has released a report of accomplishments, including progress in animal disease traceability, biotechnology, in

The owners of Allflex ear tags and SCR dairy monitoring technology is being acquired by Merck. The acquisition of the Antelliq Group, formerly known as the Allflex Group, was made public on Dec. 14 in