Monday, April 4, 2011

Cows Produce Human Breast Milk After Genetic Modification

New York Daily News

Sunday, April 3rd 2011, 2:33 PM

Chinese scientists claim to have genetically modified cows to produce milk with the same nutrients in human breast milk.

Researchers reportedly used cloning technology to mix human and cow DNA to achieve the bizarre feat, London's Telegraph reported Sunday.

"Our study describes transgenic cattle whose milk offers the similar nutritional benefits as human milk," wrote Professor Li in the journal Public Library of Science One. "The modified bovine milk is a possible substitute for human milk."

The "enhanced" cow's milk produced by some 300 dairy cows contains several human proteins found in breast milk, including ysozyme, lactoferrin and alpha-lactalbumin, the scientists claim.

"Human milk contains the 'just right' proportions of protein, carbohydrates, fats, minerals, and vitamins for an infant's optimal growth and development," Li, who led the research and is director of the State Key Laboratories for AgroBiotechnology at the China Agricultural University, told the Telegraph.

It is his hope that the modified cow milk could be used as a replacement for breast milk.

"The milk tastes stronger than normal milk," Li said. "Within 10 years, people will be able to pick up these human-milk-like products at the supermarket."

Critics fear genetically modified food, which is widely available in the United States and Europe, is not safe for human consumption.

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