Iran Produces ME's First Transgenic Kids

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Active ImageIranian researchers have announced the birth of Iran and the Middle East's first transgenic animals in the Rouyan Research Institute in Isfahan.

A transgenic animal is one that carries a foreign gene, constructed using recombinant DNA methodology, in its genome. Sheep and goats produced through this method express foreign proteins in their milk and are, therefore, considered valuable sources of protein for human therapy.

Such animals are commonly produced in countries such as the US, France, the UK, Japan, Denmark, Canada, Scotland, the Netherlands, and China to extract alpha-antitrypsin, plasminogen activating factor, factor VIII, fibrinogen, lactoalbumin, lactoferrin, human albumin, collagen I and II, and monoclonal antibodies from their milk.

The two Iranian transgenic kids named 'Shangoul' and 'Mangoul', the leading characters of a famous traditional children's story in Iran, were born in Rouyan Institute on Saturday morning.

"The two kids are in a good health condition," said Hamid Gourabi, the head of Rouyan Research Institute.

Tests revealed high concentrations of human factor IX, an anticoagulant agent used to treat patients with hemophilia B, in their blood. More time, however, is needed to study the availability of the factor in their milk.

A lamb named 'Royana', a kid named 'Hanna' and two calves named 'Bonyana' and 'Tamina' were the first animals successfully cloned in the country.

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