Iowa Public Television


Which came first ... the protein or the enzyme?

posted on April 5, 2002

Not egg-zactly your ordinary chicken.

Researchers say they say they've genetically engineered chickens to produce useful drugs in their eggs.

Scientists from the University of Georgia and AviGenics, Incorporated, say genetically engineered chickens can be used as living "bioreactors." The birds, they say, can produce reliable levels of an enzyme in their eggs to make proteins used in human medicine.

Though only 10 percent of the chickens produced the new gene, scientists say they're hopeful that poultry will prove more effective at producing helpful proteins than other genetically modified animals, like sheep, goats and cattle.

Tags: chickens drugs eggs medicine news