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From Glow in the Dark Rabbit to Anti-Cancer Purple Tomatoes here are 18 Genetically Modified Organisms You Don't Know About
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# 9 Fish Strawberries
The ripest and juiciest strawberries you got from the supermarket might contain the genetic traces of a fish. Scientists have been experimenting with combining strawberries with the “anti-freeze genes” that are found in cold water fish like Arctic Char and Sea flounders which help the strawberries resist freezing and dying in bad weather. Luckily, it doesn’t create a weird fishy-tasting strawberry.
# 8 Glow in the Dark Rabbit
Most genetically modified organisms have a scientific purpose in mind or a greater goal that usually justifies messing with something’s DNA spread. However, Eduard Kac used genetic engineering for creating works of art rather than for scientific research. His most notorious work was the Glow in the Dark rabbit named Alba. It sparked a debate about animal rights, but Alba died before anything was resolved.
# 7 Goats Spliced with Spiders
When you think of genetically splicing something with a spider, you usually think of superheroes with spider themed super powers. However, in real life, you can find animals that have been genetically combined with spiders - goats. Spider silk is flexible and strong, and some even want to try and produce it on a larger scale so we can use it to make things like parachute cords. One lab has spliced spider’s genes with a goat so that these flexible and strong spider silk genes would be replicated in their milk. This silk milk is also able to create Biosteel, a strong web-like material.
# 6 Golden Rice
Rice is a major staple food in many parts of the world partly because it's cheap and partly because it helps you feel full even when you don’t have much to eat. However, the normal white rice isn’t very healthy for you. That is why scientists are working on Golden Rice, rice that was spliced with vegetables like squash and carrots that not only create the golden color but include beta-carotene which is more nutrient dense and could help prevent blindness in children who eat it.
# 5 Ear Mouse
The most notorious genetically modified animal might be the ear mouse or the “Vacanti Mouse” which was created in 1995 by scientists in Massachusetts. The scientists wanted to prove that cartilage structures could be grown on other living creatures before being removed and transplanted into humans who need it. However, this mouse would quickly become famous or infamous as it went onto the Jay Leno show and then used as a mascot by animal-rights groups who were opposed to genetic modifications.
# 4 Scorpion Cabbage
The Androctonus australis is one of the most dangerous scorpions in the world with a venom that can cause tissue damage and death. So of course, we combined the genes from this scorpion with cabbage intended for human consumption. The gene of the scorpion’s venom changed when it was spliced with the cabbage. The venom is now only poison to insects, which spasm and die when they try to eat the crop. That same poison is supposedly completely harmless to humans, making it the perfect crop.
# 3 Anti-Cancer Purple Tomatoes
Researchers have created a tomato that is not only more flavorful but would also help prevent cancer. The researchers spliced tomatoes with the snapdragon flower to create a deep, purple tomato that almost looks like a blackberry. These super tomatoes contain potent antioxidants and inhibit the growth of cancer cells, ease the symptoms of diabetes, and even relieve the pains of growing old. You might just see purple tomatoes on your pizza someday soon.
# 2 Chinese Dog-Pig
This image went around the internet with a bunch of people thinking it was some sort of failed chimera of a pig and a dog because of its pink skin and strange tufts of hair. While it was not an animal that was genetically engineered in a lab, it is an animal that has been genetically engineered over generations and generations, like most dogs are. This dog, in particular, is the Hairless Chinese Crested Dog - an expensive and rare breed of dog that is highly sought after by some people. Even though the winner of the annual world’s ugliest dog contest is usually a Chinese Crested.
# 1 Less-Flatulent Cows
You might have heard that cows produce an excess of methane, which contributes to the dangerous greenhouse effect. It’s hard to make cows stop producing methane since they’re some of the most populous domestic livestock in the world and that is a natural part of their digestive progress. Until we genetically modified cattle to produce 25 less percent of the bacterium in their digestive tract that creates methane gas. Basically, we made cows that fart less.