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"New applications of genetic engineering in livestock" - an interdisciplinary symposium, 21./22.9.2007 in Berl31.08.2007 - (idw) Europäische Akademie zur Erforschung von Folgen wissenschaftlich-technischer Entwicklungen Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler GmbH
Joint symposium of Europäische Akademie GmbH and Berlin-Brandenburgische Akademie der Wissenschaften
Last year, the first "zoopharming" product reached market approval: it is a recombinant human protein for medical use that is produced in the milk of transgenic goats. This is only one example of upcoming applications of livestock genetic engineering. Other applications include enhancement of productivity (e.g. higher milk or meat yields), alterations of product quality (e.g. leaner meat), disease resistance (e.g. against udder inflammations), and alterations of environmental variables (e.g. reduced levels of phosphate in the faeces). Also, transgenic livestock may be used for xenotransplantation where genetic engineering is hoped to improve the animals' suitability as organ donors for humans. Currently, livestock genetic engineering is becoming increasingly feasible: the techniques to remove, modify, replace or add genes are being refined, and an increasing amount of genomic information about farm animals can be utilised. However, while genetic engineering in livestock opens a huge range of possibilities, it also raises safety and justification concerns: does genetic engineering affect animal welfare? Is it safe and morally acceptable to apply genetic engineering to farm animals for the various purposes that are envisaged?
The symposium on 21st and 22nd September addresses livestock genetic engineering with an interdisciplinary panel of speakers. They will give talks on the state of the art of the technology and its applications, animal welfare considerations, and ethical aspects. A forthcoming publication will be published in spring 2008.
The organisers gratefully acknowledge funding obtained from the programme of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research "Innovations- und Technikanalyse", and from the Hermann und Elise geborene Heckmann Wentzel Stiftung.
- Conference venue
Berlin-Brandenburgische Akademie der Wissenschaften (BBAW), Leibniz-Saal
Europäische Akademie GmbH
53474 Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler
Tel.: +49 (0) 2641 973-300
Fax: +49 (0) 2641 973-320
- Scientific Coordination
Dr. Margret Engelhard (Europäische Akademie GmbH, Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler)
Dr. Mathias Boysen (AG Gentechnologiebericht, BBAW, Berlin)
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