First Multi-coloured Lamb!

Posted on Apr 1, 2012 | 4 comments

First Multi-coloured Lamb!

Successful Insertion of Bird of Paradise Gene for Multicolour Wool

We’ve been working for a number of years to eliminate the environmentally damaging aspects of dyeing wool. We think we’ve almost succeeded. The lamb pictured at right is the first GMO lamb successfully expressing a gene for multi-colourism in it’s wool. We isolated the gene from a bird of paradise and inserted it in the embryo of this lamb.

We need to work some more on getting solid colours but this is a good start. It will be interesting to see what we get when we cross this ram with our white ewes.

4 Comments

  1. I hope this is a joke….really. How can you genetically cross one species with another birds are bird and sheep are sheep. Period. Who knows what the long term effects will be- that’s like putting fish genes into tomatoes – this can’t be real…..
    Please tell me this is a joke!

    • Yes. If you look at the date of the post it was April 1st (the picture was a rather poor photoshop job I put together quickly). However, taking genes from one species and inserting them in another completely unrelated species is now quite commonplace. Most corn, soybeans, and cotton have genes from bacteria inserted. The majority of rice grown in the US is GMO. Most insulin is produced by a genetically modified e. coli bacteria. The list is too long to mention them all.

      The fish genes in tomatoes is a legend that is completely false despite the graphics that continue to be used by the anti-GMO activists. The story was started by a scientist speculating that there might be genes in arctic char that could be valuable in conferring cold tolerance in vegetables such as tomatoes. The scientist happened to work for the first company to commercially release a GMO tomato – the FLAVR SAVR. However, the GMO technique involved removing and reinserting a mirrored copy of the gene that softens tomatoes as they ripen. This allowed a more mature tomato to be picked and shipped.

  2. Pray tell, does this lamb do the same wonderful mating dance as his bird of paradise cousin? A few months and you will see…. Unless he gets eaten first. Probably tastes faintly of bubblegum.

    • A lamb with a fleece this colourful is far too valuable as breeding stock to ever eat!

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