Taiwan, home to the world’s first transgenic glowing fish, has successfully bred fluorescent green pigs that researchers hope will boost the island’s stem cell research, a professor said on Thursday.
By injecting fluorescent green protein into embryonic pigs, a research team at the island’s leading National Taiwan University managed to breed three male transgenic pigs, said professor Wu Shinn-Chih of the university’s Institute and Department of Animal Science and Technology.
“There are partially fluorescent green pigs elsewhere, but ours are the only ones in the world that are green from inside out. Even their hearts and internal organs are green,” Wu said on Thursday.
The transgenic pigs, commonly used to study human diseases, would help researchers monitor and trace changes of the tissues during the physical development, Wu said.
In 2003, a Taiwan company began selling the world’s first genetically engineered fish, sparking protests by environmentalists who said the fluorescent green fish posed a threat to the earth’s ecosystem.
In neighboring South Korea, disgraced stem cell scientist Hwang Woo-suk apologized on Thursday for wrongdoing at his laboratory, but hinted at a conspiracy to discredit him and said he was blinded by the zeal of advancing stem cell studies.
An investigation panel at Seoul National University said on Tuesday that a team led by Hwang faked two landmark papers on embryonic stem cells, but did produce the world’s first cloned dog.