Researchers have genetically modified chickens that can put eggs that contain drugs for arthritis and some cancers.
Drugs are 100 times cheaper to produce when they are established than when they are manufactured in factories.
Researchers believe that over time production can be expanded to produce medications in commercial quantities.
Chickens do not suffer and are "pampered" compared to farm animals, according to Dr. Lissa Herron, from Roslin Technologies in Edinburgh.
"They live in very large feathers. They are fed and watered and taken care of daily by highly qualified technicians and live a pretty comfortable life.
"As for the chicken you know, it's just to put a normal egg. It does not affect your health in any way, it's just sliding, putting eggs as usual."
Scientists have previously shown that goats, rabbits, and genetically modified chickens can be used to produce proteins in their milk or eggs. Researchers say that their new approach is more efficient, produces better returns and is more profitable than previous attempts.
"Chicken production can cost between 10 and 100 times less than the factories. So we hope that we are looking for at least a total manufacturing cost 10 times lower," said Dr. Herron.
The most important saving comes from the fact that chicken coverings are much cheaper to build and run than the clean rooms are very sterile for factory production.
Many diseases are caused because the body does not produce enough of a naturally occurring chemical or protein substance. These diseases can be controlled with drugs that contain the deficient protein. These drugs are synthetically produced by pharmaceutical companies and can be very expensive to manufacture.
Dr. Herron and his colleagues managed to reduce costs by inserting a human gene – which normally produces the protein in humans – in the part of the DNA of the chickens that participate in producing the white in the eggs of chickens .
After exploding the eggs and separating the yol's target, Dr. Herron discovered that the chicken had relatively large amounts of protein.
The team has focused on two proteins that are essential for the immune system: one is IFNalpha2a, which has powerful anti-viral and anti-cancer effects, and the other is macrophage-CSF, which is It is developing as a therapy that stimulates damaged tissues to repair themselves.
Three eggs are enough to produce a dose of the drug, and chickens can set up to 300 eggs per year. With enough chickens, researchers believe they can produce medications in commercial quantities.
The development of medications for human health and the regulatory cycles required will last between 10 and 20 years. Researchers expect to use chickens to develop medicines for animal health.
These include drugs that increase the immune system of farm animals as an alternative to antibiotics, which would reduce the risk of developing new strains of antibiotic resistant superbombs. And there is the potential to use the healing properties of the CSF macrophage to treat pets, according to Dr Herron.
"For example, we could use it to regenerate the liver or kidneys of a pet that has suffered damages in these organs. Currently, the medications available are a little expensive, so we hope that we can enter this a little more . "
Professor Helen Sang of the Roslin Institute of the University of Edinburgh said: "We are not yet producing medications for people, but this study shows that chickens are commercially viable to produce proteins suitable for to discovery studies of drugs and other applications in biotechnology ".
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