Chinese scientists have recently reported that they have developed genetically modified pigs that are immune to the classical swine fever virus (CSFV).
Classical swine fever, caused by CSFV, is highly contagious, and the affected pigs usually die within weeks of the conclusion of the contract. The virus can be transferred from one pig to another, and also from the mother to her offspring. Both domestic and wild pigs may be infected with the virus.
With extensive vaccination, North America, Australia and much of Europe controlled the disease effectively and only reported sporadic epidemics. However, this disease continues to spread throughout the rest of the world, and control methods are limited to slaughtering pigs, resulting in significant economic losses.
In the study, researchers from the Faculty of Life Sciences at Jilin University successfully produced anti-CSFV pigs using the CRISPR / Cas9 gene editing tool with an RNAi interference technique.
The team performed the genetic arrangement of the pigs, which allowed animals to have an innate resistance to CSFV.
According to the results of viral challenges, although pigs with the changed gene were infected with the virus, their symptoms were much less serious and non-fatal, despite the fact that the number of virus in the blood was also much lower. All pigs whose genes were not edited died from classical swine fever.
Meanwhile, researchers also found that resistance to CSFV can be transmitted steadily to the first generation of offspring.
The findings were published in the December issue of the US Open Access Journal, PLOS Pathogens.
The researchers monitor the safety and effectiveness of this method as adult genetically engineered pigs.
According to Ouyang Honggeng of Jilin University, the corresponding author of the research, the genetic regulation strategy could be a direct and effective measure for the permanent introduction of disease-resistant characteristics among the pig population at large, and possibly in other species. home end
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