We all know what the BEST food for babies is (at least for the first 6 months): breast milk! But what about children who can't get it, because they are adopted, for instance? The solution may be at hand: Scientists have successfully introduced human genes into 300 dairy cows to produce milk with the same properties as human breast milk.
Researchers have found that as little as four weeks of breastfeeding for a newborn baby has a big effect on brain development, which lasts until the child is at least 14 years old. PhysOrg.com quotes researcher Almudena Sevilla-Sanz as saying, "The difference is statistically significant across English, maths and science scores, and persists into secondary school. Indeed, there is some evidence that the effect tends to grow over time." Also, there are sometimes medical reasons why breast milk is a necessity. For instance, extremely premature babies fed human donor milk are less likely to develop a dangerous intestinal condition than babies fed a standard premature infant formula derived from cow's milk.
In the Telegraph, Richard Gray reports that this GM milk may be eventually be on your supermarket shelves. It will be as safe to drink as milk from ordinary dairy cows. So far, scientists said they have produced a herd of around 300 cows that are able to produce human-like milk. They are physically identical to ordinary cows. Gray quotes researcher Ning Li as saying, "Our study describes transgenic cattle whose milk offers the similar nutritional benefits as human milk. The milk tastes stronger than normal milk. The modified bovine milk is a possible substitute for human milk. It fulfilled the conception of humanizing the bovine milk." It ALSO gives a boost to Big Business!
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