Fatherless mice have been created in the lab using only unfertilised mouse eggs, in a move that could one day pave the way for creating one parent babies.
Virgin births, also known as parthenogenesis, have previously been seen naturally in birds, lizards, snakes, sharks, rays and other fish, but now scientists in China say they’ve achieved parthenogenesis in mice without any male genetic DNA.
Earlier endeavours in mammals have mostly been unsuccessful because of genomic imprinting, a process in which the parent of origin determines which copy of a gene is active.
Yanchang Wei and colleagues at Shanghai Jiao Tong University revealed that parthenogenesis is possible in mammals through a targeted technique that edits DNA methylation marks, which are chemical modifications that can change gene activity without altering the underlying DNA sequence.
The authors used the epigenetic rewriting approach to seven imprinting control regions in mouse oocytes, successfully altering DNA methylation in one copy of the gene but not the other.
The researchers said that the transfer of modified embryos into foster female mice then resulted in the generation of viable full-term offspring.
They wrote in their paper that following parthenogenetic activation, those edited regions displayed maintenance of methylation as inherently established regions during early preimplantation development, and it was said that the transfer of altered parthenogenetic embryos into foster mothers resulted in significantly extended development and finally into the generation of viable full-term offspring and that the data showed that parthenogenesis could be accomplished by targeted epigenetic rewriting of multiple critical imprinting control regions.
However, only one live offspring survived to adulthood, accentuating the necessity for further investigation and improvement of the technique used in an endeavour to enhance its success rate.
However, the outcomes indicate that parthenogenesis could be achieved in mammals through the chemical DNA modifications used by scientists.
According to the authors, the feasibility of parthenogenesis in mammals opens up possible avenues to agriculture, research and medicine.
Parthenogenesis is a technique that effectively forms clones of the parent since the embryo acquires genetic material from only one individual, and one of the most typical methods for this form of reproduction is for the egg to be fertilised by a still immature egg cell that acts almost like a sperm.
Usually, parthenogenesis occurs in lower plants and invertebrate animals like ants, wasps, or bees. However, it’s been noticed in some species like reptiles, fish and even birds who would typically reproduce sexually.
Some people will probably find this horrifying because this is meddling with nature, and it appears to be wrong on every level, and why would they want to do this? And I hate to spoil the narrative but most women actually do like men and children do need fathers.
Although some women’s experiences of men have sometimes proved otherwise. Some women are going their separate ways and feel that it’s easier to go it alone, and is it really what we really need now, more fatherless children?
And just because scientists can do this, doesn’t mean that they should do it, but of course, feminists will love this.
They should be leaving those mice alone and they should be leaving humankind alone, the world doesn’t need any more kinky fuckery with our DNA, and then madness should stop right now before these mad scientists create havoc.
Two parent-children must have evolved for a reason, but things are evolving all the time, some with good consequences, others with bad consequences, and will this be the extinction of men?
This is almost like Jurassic Park, the movie. Scientists were so obsessed with whether or not they could, they didn’t stop to think if they should.