Jan 21, 2019 | Updated: 04:07 PM EST

Stem Cells Into Pork: Can We Eat It

Feb 17, 2017 02:13 AM EST


There might be a day when people don't have to kill animals for them to eat their bacon. A Dutch vegetarian scientist has come to a solution, stem cell pork.

An animal-free meat could exist, a new study published in the journal "Scientific Reports" stated. The paper explained that the muscle will be from a newly created pig stem-cell line. It will not be taken from primary cells of a pig. "This entailed understanding the biology of relatively uncharacterized and recently-derived porcine induced pluripotent stem cell lines. What conditions support cell growth, survival' and differentiation? These are all questions I had to figure out in the lab before the cells could be turned into muscle," co-author Dr. Nicholas Genovese, a stem-cell biologist (and vegetarian), told Digital Trends.

Phys has reported that there were several attempts at growing a pig in the laboratory. The U.S., Scandinavia, and Japan have also been researching ways to make meat in the laboratory. However, it was the Dutch project that is the most advanced, said Jason Matheny, who has studied alternatives to conventional meat at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore and is not involved in the Dutch research.

NASA even had a similar project. They wanted to make meat for their astronauts so they can grow it in space but after some attempts, they failed. To make a steak in the lab, it would take 30 days or more of cell multiplying, according to many scientists who have tried it. Many of them have only succeeded in making one centimeter of pork, and that would not suffice anybody for a meal.

It would be really great if scientists could make meat in the laboratory. Vegetarian and animal rights activists would love and be all over the idea. However, the poultry owners might not like it. 

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