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Inside the industry supplying millions of mutant mice

作者:项目遏    发布时间:2017-05-24 03:00:54    

MORE animals were used in lab research in Britain last year than there are people living in Los Angeles. UK government figures show that 4 million animals were used, a 9 per cent increase on 2011. Most of these – 3.3 million – were rodents. Some 2200 primates were used, mainly to test drug safety. The majority of the rodents were mice, 1.77 million of which were “knockouts”: animals with a specific gene turned off. A lucrative industry has sprung up to supply them. Phil Simmons of Sage Labs, St Louis, Missouri, a commercial supplier, estimates that the industry’s worldwide turnover is $50 million a year. By 2016, each of the mouse’s 20,000 genes will have been turned off, if work by the International Knockout Mouse Consortium goes to plan. It has received $150 million in funding from the US National Institutes of Health and the European Union. Cheap the mice ain’t: a bespoke knockout mouse typically costs around $45,000. This article appeared in print under the headline “Bespoke mice” More on these topics:

 

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