Scientists have grown the world’s first embryos-chimeras composed of cells of man and pig. These embryos can help to create a technology for growing human organs inside animals. This is stated in a study published in the journal the Cell, the BBC reports.
The proportion of human cells in the embryo is less than 0.001%, the remaining cells of the pig. The embryos allowed to develop for only 28 days.
Scientists have implanted human stem cells into the embryos of pigs. The result was a mix of human and swine cells, which for a month had placed the female of a pig.
This process was very inefficient: 2 075 implantable embryos within 28 days developed only 186 pieces.
However, there had been indications that human cells continue to function as part of the Chimera.
“For the first time human cells have grown in large animal,” explained the Agency, one of the study’s authors Professor Juan Carlos Izpisua Belmonte from the Institute of biological research Salk.
The low efficiency of the applied method, the Professor explains the long evolution which has separated man and pig. For example, the development of the fetal pigs is much faster than in humans. A pig’s pregnancy lasts for four months against nine human.
Belmonte has compared this process to the highway where one car goes much faster than the other, leading to collisions.
Now, according to scientists, such chimeras can help in the testing of medicines before testing in humans in the study of the beginning of the development of human diseases. Also, the Chimera can help to study the early development of human embryos and to explain the differences in how function bodies of different living beings.
In fact, scientists for this you need to increase the proportion of human cells in the embryo to 0.1-1%.