Scientists In Uruguay Genetically Engineer The World’s First Glow-In-The-Dark Sheep.

Glow-in-the-dark sheep.

Glow-in-the-dark sheep: Flock of the Damned or Sheep of the Corn?

Alejo Menchaca and his team at the Animal Reproduction Institute of Uruguay are messing around with the green fluorescent protein (GFP) again and this time it’s in sheep. From io9:

“Menchaca’s sheep – which were born last October and, apart from their corporeal glow, appear to have developed just like an unmodified flock – express the protein in tissues throughout their bodies, causing them to glow under ultraviolet light. Menchaca says that, in this particular instance, the sheep were modified merely as a proof of concept.”

I think a Dr. Ian Malcolm quote would best sum up what I think about glow-in-the-dark sheep:

“Genetic power is the most awesome force the planet’s ever seen, but you wield it like a kid that’s found his dad’s gun.”

Welcome to the Genetics Park. [io9]


Christmas Tree + Jellyfish & Firefly Genes = Self-Lit Christmas Tree That Might Sting The Hell Out Of You.

Incredible Hulk Christmas TreeTreehugger posted the article, “Christmas Trees Given Jellyfish Genes Could Produce Their Own Light,” about the efforts of British genetic engineers to develop a luminescent Christmas tree. From the article:

“According to one BBC report, a team of postgraduate researchers from the University of Hertfordshire have devised a way to splice the bioluminescent properties of jellyfish and fireflies into the genes of a Douglas spruce, thereby creating a tree which would glow green both day and night, without adding a cent to your electricity bill.”

The Jubbling part of me is leaning toward “Yay! This might reduce the amount of electricity we consume lighting our Christmas tree.” But the other part of me has seen the movie “The Hulk” and knows this won’t turn out well. Sorry Jubbling; I’m listening to part 2 this time. [Treehugger]