Researchers Create Mouse With Two Fathers, Say Humans Could be Next
December 9, 2010 11:43 AM
comment(s) - last by
Scientists have created mice with two fathers. A surrogate mother is required, but her DNA isn't passed to the selected offspring..
(Source: Science Museum)
The laws of nature are being seriously bent by this Texas team
Two male mammals can not reproduce with each other, right? That's what you learned in your biology class, certainly. Well turns out, like many laws of nature, there can be exceptions, with a certain amount of trickery. Researchers at the
M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
in Houston, Texas have bent the rules of mammalian biology and created a pair of mice, one male one female, that have two fathers and no maternal sex chromosomes.
The MDACC team of reproductive biologists, led by
Dr. Richard R. Berhringer
first took fibroblasts (connective tissue cells) from the first male (XY) father mouse, when he was just a fetus. The fibroblasts were selected as they are easy to
induce into pluripotency
, a method of producing non-embryonic stem cells. The induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) were then cultured.
During the culturing something funny happened -- the Y allele disappeared in some of the cells. This proved a critical step in producing two-father babies. The XO cells were then transplanted into the blastocyst (developing embryo) of a mouse surrogate mother. The resulting female chimera children (a second surrogate mother), which had a mix of XO/XX sex chromosomes. The females (which bore the paternal chromesome from the first father) were then mated with the second father.
The end result of this rather confusing process was that some of the children had sex chromosomes from both fathers, or both mothers. They also likely inherited autosomes from each father.
The team proclaims, "Our study exploits iPS cell technologies to combine the alleles from two males to generate male and female progeny, i.e. a new form of mammalian reproduction."
The researchers speculate that they could also use the technique to get the mouse to self reproduce. They state, "It is also possible that one male could produce both oocytes and sperm for self-fertilization to generate male and female progeny."
the work in the journal
Biology of Reproduction
They say that it could be leveraged to save
. If only two males were in captivity, a surrogate mother of a similar species could be used to birth a Chimera which would produce oocytes (eggs) from the first father, resulting in two fathers being able to pass their genetic legacy on to offspring.
Applications may also lie in livestock breeding. Typically livestock are selected for favorable characteristics. But what if two males
have certain very favorable genetic traits? This technique could allow those strengths to be merged.
Last, but not least, the team's most controversial suggestion is that using a varied iPS technique, human oocytes (eggs) could be produced from a father's cells. This could lead to two men being able to synthetically reproduce, certainly a controversial technology. The only question left is whether two females could be made to reproduce as well? We'll have to wait and see for future studies on that topic.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: What's with the controversy?
12/15/2010 10:47:06 AM
God could do evil, but then he wouldn't be God. Also remember that on the 7th day God looked at all that he had created and called it good. The Creation of disaster (for evil) is in fact good. However, looking at the world as it is, one could make a strong case that God is no longer in the business of doing that.
The ultimate aim of this research seems to be the removal of the need for any partner in order to reproduce (for males at least), effectively making it like cloning. The church has already come out against cloning, and likely won't support any form of reproduction that attempts to remove either men or women from the equation even if the promoted aims seem reasonable.
Personally, I hope this research isn't receiving govt funding since its aims don't appear to be worthwhile in my opinion.
"We are going to continue to work with them to make sure they understand the reality of the Internet. A lot of these people don't have Ph.Ds, and they don't have a degree in computer science." -- RIM co-CEO Michael Lazaridis
Report: Tigers Near Extinction, Only 3,200 Left as Poaching Continues
February 11, 2010, 4:12 PM
Researchers Make Leap in Stem Cell Research; Cells Can Now be Produced From Any Tissue
July 2, 2008, 10:03 AM
Newly Discovered Costa Rican Glass Frog is Kermit's Doppelgänger
April 22, 2015, 11:26 AM
Researchers Hope to Find "Exotic" Lifeforms Inside Crater of Dinosaur Killing Meteor
April 14, 2015, 8:47 PM
Mathematician's Sociological Formulation May Explain the "Hipster Paradox"
April 14, 2015, 1:13 PM
Cool Science Video: This is What a McDonald's Burger Looks Like in Your Stomach
April 7, 2015, 1:43 PM
Fraud Artist Engineered Stunning UK Jailbreak Via Typosquatting, Email
April 4, 2015, 2:57 PM
Food Chemists at Italy's Barilla Claim to Have Perfect Instant Noodles w/out Frying
March 26, 2015, 4:25 PM
Most Popular Articles
Windows 10 Build 10061: A Quick Review
April 27, 2015, 10:57 AM
Microsoft "Welcomes Developers" to Its New "Edge Browser" (Codename: Spartan)
April 29, 2015, 7:25 PM
Worst Kept Secret -- $35 Million Anonymous Sharing App Startup Shuts Down
April 30, 2015, 7:33 AM
Leather-Bound LG G4 Shuffles Out, "Specially Designed" Snapdragon 808 SoC
April 28, 2015, 4:00 PM
Report: Apple Pulls the Plug on Apple Watch Store Launch
April 16, 2015, 3:18 PM
Latest Blog Posts
Sceptre Airs 27", 120 Hz. 1080p Monitor/HDTV w/ 5 ms Response Time for $220
Dec 3, 2014, 10:32 PM
Costco Gives Employees Thanksgiving Off; Wal-Mart Leads "Black Thursday" Charge
Oct 29, 2014, 9:57 PM
"Bear Selfies" Fad Could Turn Deadly, Warn Nevada Wildlife Officials
Oct 28, 2014, 12:00 PM
The Surface Mini That Was Never Released Gets "Hands On" Treatment
Sep 26, 2014, 8:22 AM
ISIS Imposes Ban on Teaching Evolution in Iraq
Sep 17, 2014, 5:22 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2015 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information