You probably know about genetically modified organisms (or GMOs) if you are a conscious eater. Some claim GMOs are unnatural and an abomination to wildlife. Others believe that GMOs are necessary for the advancement of science. There are benefits and downfalls to science messing with nature, but there are definitely some bizarre mutations caused by the use of GMOs.
1. Pigs that produce 65% less phosphorus in their waste.
A genetically engineered pig producing 65 percent less phosphorous in animal waste was approved for limited production. This type of pig is seen as more environmental friendly.
2. Featherless chickens.
Scientists in Israel created a breed of featherless chickens that can save time on plucking and are more environmentally friendly. They also significantly reduce the cost of being raised. Scientists claimed that featherless chickens are safe because they are created by breeding a regular broiler chicken with a Naked Neck.
3. Different colored carrots.
These carrots not only pack more color into salads, but also contain more calcium.
4. See-through frogs.
These “glass frogs” developed a mutation allowing to see through their skin, revealing their organs. It is a huge help to scientists everywhere in figuring out how the animal’s organs work, how disease spreads, and how cancers develop in their bodies.
5. The mouse with an ear on its back.
This mouse was created to demonstrate a method of fabricating cartilage structures to transplant into human patients. A resorbable polyester fabric was infiltrated with bovine cartilage cells and implanted under the skin of a hairless mouse. The mouse was a commonly used strain of immunocompromised mouse, which prevented a transplant rejection.
6. Fish that glow.
Dr. Zhiyuan Gong and his colleagues at the National University of Singapore worked with a gene called green fluorescent protein (GFP) in 1999. This gene was originally extracted from a jellyfish that naturally produced bright green bioluminescence. They inserted the gene into a zebrafish embryo, allowing it to integrate into the zebrafish’s genome. This caused the fish to be brightly fluorescent under natural white light and ultraviolet light.
Plums and apricots are delicious fruits on their own. Both fruits combined form the genetically modified treat known as the pluot. This fruit is intensely flavored and delicious.
8. Golden seahorses.
Vietnamese scientists created these creatures, a first for the country in the field of genetic modification. They mixed Gold dust with jellyfish proteins, and inserted the substance into seahorse’s eggs by using the “gene shooting method.”
9. Extremely muscley cows.
The Belgian Blue is a breed with a defective myostatin gene (the gene responsible for muscle inhibition). This results in double muscling in the animal. Belgian Blues supposedly have more lean meat and reduced fat content, leading to more health risks (and inbreeding) than other breeds. This also puts a premium price on their steaks.
Other genetically altered fruits and veggies created for health reasons. The lemato was solely an experiment to determine if scientists could make tomatoes give off the scent of lemons.
11. Jake the Alligator Man.
Some speculate that this mutant might be a distant ancestor of man. But later theories claim that it was an early secret genetically engineering project gone wrong and wild. Whatever Jake’s true origin is, he truly is an interesting specimen.
Science is too bizarre sometimes. I can’t wrap my head around some of the experiments. All I know is I sometimes wish I had half an alligator body.