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Massive animal cloning research project ended due to 90 percent death rate and 'unnecessary suffering'

Thursday, March 03, 2011 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
Tags: cloning, animals, health news

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(NaturalNews) New Zealand-based research organization AgResearch has abandoned its 13-year animal cloning research program after it proved to be an abysmal failure. A company report states that "only 10 percent of the cloned animals survived through the research trials," and it also admits that the animals underwent "unnecessary suffering" in the process.

For years, AgResearch has unsuccessfully tried to modify animals to create more milk, grow faster, resist disease, and even unnaturally grow special proteins from genetically-modified animal embryos for use in human drugs. But reports indicate that most of the animals used in its trials experienced severe pain and suffering as a result, while the vast majority of them ended up dying from either spontaneous abortions or hydrops, a condition where a cow's uterus fills with water and results in the mother having to be euthanized.

"The decision was made, enough is enough," said Jimmy Suttie, General Manager of AgResearch Applied Biotechnologies, concerning the scrapping of the program.

Though the statement infers an end to cloning research at AgResearch, the company has other cloning plans in the works. Reports indicate that the company plans to now move forward with another cloning project that involves transgenic technology. And the new research may result in the same or worse results because it uses embryonic stem cells to clone animals -- and virtually all research involving embryonic stem cells, both in humans and animals, has been a complete failure.

Like the genetic engineering of plants, animal cloning is chock full of unknowns. Besides the fact that cloning is largely unsuccessful in the first place, consumption of cloned animal products by humans has never been proven to be safe. Nevertheless, regulatory bodies both in the US and abroad have carelessly allowed cloned foods to slip into the food supply, endangering the health of untold numbers of people (http://www.naturalnews.com/029411_cloned_bee...).

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