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World’s First Chimeric Monkeys

Researchers have bred monkeys derived from six different monkey parents.

By | January 5, 2012

Two rhesus monkeys made from a combination of embryonic cells from six different monkey embryos OREGON HEALTH AND SCIENCE UNIVERSITY

Researchers at the Oregon National Primate Research Center have generated the world’s first ever chimeric primates—three young monkeys derived from six distinct genomes, according to a paper published today (January 5) in Cell.

The infants—a set of twins and a singleton—were generated from 4-day-old embryos of six different rhesus monkeys stuck together early in development, then implanted into five adult females. Tests on the fetuses showed that all of the infants’ organs and tissues contained a mixture of cells carrying the different genomes, and all three monkeys that made it term appear to be healthy with no birth defects.

Although the embryos grow together into one larger embryo, "the cells never fuse," Shoukhrat Mitalipov, an associate scientist at the Oregon National Primate Research Center who led the research, told The Guardian. Instead, "they stay together and work together to form tissues and organs. The possibilities for science are enormous," he said, such as aiding the study of embryonic development and cellular differentiation.

Chimeric mice were first bred in the 1960s, with chimeric rats, rabbits, sheep, and cattle appearing over the last half a century. "I don't think it's ever been done before in a primate species," Mitalipov told OregonLive.

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Comments

Avatar of: Ellen Hunt

Ellen Hunt

Posts: 74

January 7, 2012

Chimeras aren't "bred". They are manufactured and implanted.

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Posts: 0

January 7, 2012

Chimeras aren't "bred". They are manufactured and implanted.

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Posts: 0

January 7, 2012

Chimeras aren't "bred". They are manufactured and implanted.

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Posts: 0

January 9, 2012

Hi Ellen. Good point. The story has been updated and a correction amended.

Thanks for reading!
~Jef Akst, editor, The Scientist

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Posts: 0

January 9, 2012

Hi Ellen. Good point. The story has been updated and a correction amended.

Thanks for reading!
~Jef Akst, editor, The Scientist

Avatar of: TheSciAdmin

TheSciAdmin

Posts: 56

January 9, 2012

Hi Ellen. Good point. The story has been updated and a correction amended.

Thanks for reading!
~Jef Akst, editor, The Scientist

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