What if humans weren’t the only source of organ donation for humans?
According to recent research from a team of scientists led by Pablo Ross, PhD of UC Davis, it is possible to remove the gene responsible for creating the pancreas from pig embryos and replace them with human stem cells taken from the skin of adults. The resulting organ would be a perfect DNA match to its human genetic source. This would essentially create “genetic chimerism, or a chimera,” a type of two-species hybrid.
This research is considered controversial because of the effects it may have on the pigs themselves. What if the DNA migrates to another portion of the embryo and the pig grows a human brain? Some argue that we would be giving animals some human capacities, which may ethically violate the “sacrosanct” nature of the human condition.