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Designer Mice Made to Order 382

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the time-to-start-a-mouse-farm dept.
blackbearnh writes "CNN is reporting about the world of designer mice. No, not the kind you click, the kind that scamper around and eat cheese. An effort is underway to produce mice with each of the 20-25,000 individual mouse genes "knocked out", which could lead to novel new treatments for humans. It turns out that after fully sequencing the mouse genome, the little fellas are almost identical to humans. From the article: 'A mouse with arthritis runs close to $200; two pairs of epileptic mice can cost 10 times that. You want three blind mice? That'll run you about $250. And for your own custom mouse, with the genetic modification of your choosing, expect to pay as much as $100,000.'"
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Designer Mice Made to Order

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  • Re:Wistful thinking (Score:3, Informative)

    by Bazzalisk (869812) on Tuesday March 07, 2006 @06:19PM (#14870328) Homepage
    Nah, you can't call him that, Apple have a trademark.
  • by ShecoDu (447850) on Tuesday March 07, 2006 @06:41PM (#14870488) Homepage
    If the cats don't succeed eating them, they will eventually grow bored of the moice and stop paying attention to them (that's how cats are) and you'll end up with a pair of super mice roaming around your house. :)
  • Re:would you? (Score:3, Informative)

    by Helios1182 (629010) on Tuesday March 07, 2006 @06:41PM (#14870491)
    Just google for Richard Geere and Gerbil.
  • Jackson Lab (Score:3, Informative)

    by oudzeeman (684485) on Tuesday March 07, 2006 @07:11PM (#14870754)
    I work at the Jackson Lab, but as a software engineer (working with computational biologists to write parallel code). It's pretty facinating place. we have over 1200 employees divided into two major groups - pure research and JRS (Jackson Research Systems) which breeds and sells about 3000 different mice to the scientific community. Many of our 3000 strains of mice are available only from the Jackson Laboratory - surplus money from mice sales goes to pay for research support (research scientists apply for grants but the mice sales surplus helps pay for operating costs). It's the worlds largest mamallian research facility
  • ORNL Mouse House (Score:2, Informative)

    by DarthGonzo (629292) on Tuesday March 07, 2006 @08:01PM (#14871157)
    I'm kind of amazed that at no point is the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) Mouse House mentioned anywhere in the article. ORNL has been in the mouse genetics business for decades with a large number of genetic variants available on site.

    Not long ago, they relocated to a new facility.

    http://bio.lsd.ornl.gov/mgd/news/MH/Sept2003.html [ornl.gov]
  • Re:Only $100,000 (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 07, 2006 @11:59PM (#14872400)
    I'm finishing up a PhD in molecular biology, and I've made a few knockout/knockin mice of my own over the years. I gotta tell ya, for $100k a pop I'd make these things all day long. Yes, the work is slow and tedious. As another poster mentioned, your mice often die before birth depending on the modification. But there's no good reason that a single person couldn't have multiple different projects in the works at a given time. Even with a 10% success rate (yes, yes maybe not realistic) I'd bet a single person could churn out 10 different lines a year. Granted, the capital costs of getting in the game are high. But all of the above said, $100,000 still strikes me as highway robbery.

Thus mathematics may be defined as the subject in which we never know what we are talking about, nor whether what we are saying is true. -- Bertrand Russell

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