Friday, April 1, 2016

Chicken DNA Enhanced to Create New Dino Species

Control chicken embryo, altered chicken embryo and alligator embryo

Scientists at Yale University in New Haven succeeded last year in combining the DNA of a chicken and an alligator to create what some have called a "dino-chicken."

The experiment by Bhart-Anjan Abzhanov involved repressing the beak-development genes to allow more primitive features, left over from their Mesozoic ancestors, to emerge.

According to BBC, in their newest experiment, Abzhanov and his colleagues have added to that genetic blueprint the DNA information recovered from a well preserved Oviraptor fossil collected in the Liaoning province of China.

Unlike the killer "raptors" of the Jurassic Park franchise, these new animals exhibit what Abzhanov describes as "an unmistakable sense of humor, and an apparent desire to communicate using a suite of facial expressions and language-like calls."

Surprisingly, the animals exhibit a significantly larger cognitive capacity than the researchers expected. Three of them has taken up residency in Yale's Artificial Intelligence lab, where they have learned to operate computers and have used them to further alter the structure of their own DNA.

Yale has filed for a patent for the new animal, which they have dubbed Galloraptor ludificus. They announced yesterday that they plan to introduce Galloraptors into the marketplace as companion animals for the elderly.

The study is published in the journal Evolution
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williamblomstrom said...

Perfect, thank you, I had a good laugh. I'll be passing this along to my colleagues.

MoStarkey said...

Up there with NPR's exploding maple trees. Thanks.

Fraser said...

Nice one! Seen the National Trust Video about re-setting Avebury to Summer time?

Bruno said...

I read this article to co-workers. We gave a lot of laughter. Thanks!

Fabio Porta said...

The computer part really made me laugh :D Great april's fool! :D

Charley Parker said...

What? No frog DNA?

Bill Marshall said...

Mine loves to help around the kitchen (except at Thanksgiving).

Steve said...

I hope 65 qualifies as elderly!

Steven Powers said...

Thanks for that. April Fools to you to.

Willow's Quiet Corner said...

Hee Hee Hee Hee! Coming soon to a pet store near you! Get your orders in now! :)

Warren JB said...

"Unlike the killer "raptors" of the Jurassic Park franchise, these new animals exhibit what Abzhanov describes as "an unmistakable sense of humor"..."

... and then it finally clicked what the date was. Nice one!

Mitch said...

Thank you, I needed that laugh. You captured a perfect and endearing likeness of that Galloraptor ludificus fellow too.

PS: @Bill Marshall: "....(except at Thanksgiving)." Good one!

K_tigress said...

Yes! Good April fools joke.
But Scientists really have been doing these experiments in the labs. But they always put the embryo down after finishing the experiments.
They actually have made the chick embryo grow features like teeth in the beak and leg feathers just by activating certain dormant genes.