NOV 10, 2018 8:04 AM PST

Engineering Viable Offspring From Same-sex Mouse Parents

WRITTEN BY: Carmen Leitch

As reported in Cell Stem Cell, scientists at the Chinese Academy of Scientists have used stem cells that they genetically edited to produce offspring from two mouse moms or two mouse dads. The research went further than previous research in this area and created viable offspring - in the case of pups born from mouse moms, they went on to have pups of their own. The investigators set out to learn more about reproduction and not necessarily to bring this technology to humans, however. 

Humans carry chromosomes in pairs, one set from each parent, and our bodies have a special way to control which genes are expressed - the copy we inherit from mom, or from dad. That process is called imprinting. In order to get the mice they engineered to be viable, the researchers had to use CRISPR/Cas9 in haploid embryonic stem cells to solve problems with imprinting in embryos generated from same-sex parents. That solution is explained in detail in the video.

About the Author
BS
Experienced research scientist and technical expert with authorships on over 30 peer-reviewed publications, traveler to over 70 countries, published photographer and internationally-exhibited painter, volunteer trained in disaster-response, CPR and DV counseling.
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