From: Wagdy Sawahel, SciDevNet, More from this Affiliate
Published October 29, 2009 10:15 AM

Chickens Immunized by Genetically Modified Peas

Genetically modified peas that can protect chickens against a common infection have been successful in trials, say scientists.

The plants, which protected the chickens from a parasite called Eimeria, which costs the poultry industry US$2.4 billion a year, were developed at Novoplant GmbH, a German plant biotechnology company.

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Scientists inserted a gene that caused the plants to produce an antibody that stops the parasite invading the chicken's gut cells. The peas can be ground into flour and then added to cheap chicken fodder, making the approach suitable for rural poultry farming in developing countries.

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