Scientist Ready To Flip the Switch on Dinosaur Features In Chickens

August 25, 2009

Canada (ChattahBox) – Proving what ideas can be hatched when you mix Jurassic Park, a KFC variety bucket, and just a little weed (just kidding), Canadian scientists have begun a project that they hope will lead to chickens with features of their ancestors, the dinosaurs.

Among the features hoped to be created are claws, sharp teeth, and longer tails, all of which can theoretically be manipulated using the same genome already present within the developing chicken.

Kind of creepy, but likely not dangerous, as the lead of the research, Hans Larsson of McGill University, was quoted.

“We’re not going to hatch a T. Rex or something,” Larsson stems off any irrational theories about scientists playing God and creating dinosaurs to destroy civilization early.

“It’s purely staying on anatomy and using the existing genome. I mean even if in a crazy world one of these were to get out and ‘rampage’ in the city — a chicken-sized animal — and were to meet up with one that had similar kinds of anatomy, if they bred they would produce an ordinary chicken.”

You may be wondering at this point why he has chosen to do this. Part of it was due to a conversation (which I would have loved to have heard) with paleontologist Jack Horner, who is known for his work on Jurassic Park.

But it is also in an attempt to shed some light on the process of evolution, and out ability to manipulate using similar features to our ancestors. A chicken just happened to be a convenient, and admittedly hysterical, test prospect.

This stroke of mad scientist genius hasn’t actually been started on more than a research level yet, as there are too many problems up in the air. For instance, is this theoretically possible? Is it ethically sound? Will anyone be crazy enough to pay a man to give chicken teeth?

“Scientifically, it would have very minimal payoff. . . . But there might be a very good reason publicly to do it — public education and influencing how people think about development and evolution,” he says. But I wouldn’t have funding for that because that would require a hatchery, a place to raise these animals and it’s not something that NSERC (the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada) would typically fund.”

The NSERC is, however, funding his search for the possibility of creating these little chicken monsters, so we will have to keep our fingers crossed.

Source


Comments

2 Responses to “Scientist Ready To Flip the Switch on Dinosaur Features In Chickens”

  1. Old Man Dotes on August 25th, 2009 4:36 pm

    Headline from the Montreal Gazette, Monday, August 10, 2015: “Neighborhoods evacuated as carnivorous chickens rampage through city”

  2. Chris on August 26th, 2009 7:42 am

    Hi

    If this was to work, would you be able to bring back the dodo’s. As they are an extinct bird, it would be great to bring them back to civilization.

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