HOW ANIMALS ARE GENETICALLY MODIFIED
There are a few different methods used to genetically modify animals, including:
This involves introducing foreign genetic material into the animal’s DNA to give it new traits.
This can be done using a variety of techniques, such as microinjection (a tiny needle is used to inject genetic material directly into the nucleus of a cell), electroporation (an electrical field to create small holes in the cell membrane, which allows genetic material to enter the cell), and viral vectors (These are viruses that have been modified so that they carry specific genes that scientists want to introduce into an animal’s cells).
This is a newer technique that allows scientists to make precise changes to an animal’s DNA using tools like CRISPR-Cas9. (Cas9 is an enzyme that acts like a pair of molecular scissors, cutting the DNA at specific locations. CRISPR refers to a series of genetic sequences that guide Cas9 to the right spot on the DNA). With gene editing, specific genes can be added, removed, or modified.
Cloning involves creating an exact genetic copy of an existing animal by transferring its DNA into an egg cell and implanting it into a surrogate mother.