Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Lactose Free Cows?

New Zealand researchers have genetically engineered a cow whose milk, produced for the moment by artificially stimulated lactation, lacks β-lactoglobulin protein, one of the primary milk allergens affecting humans. Great news for people who are lactose intolerant!

Or not, since apparently it is presently illegal to market or even consume transgenic milk. There are perhaps more important reasons to take the linked story as less than the revolutionary news the headlines make it out to be. For example, the researches can't explain the curious rise in casein proteins in the milk. They also are dismissing as irrelevant--though unconvincingly--the premature birth of their franken-cow and the significant absence of Daisy's tail. (Perhaps Eeyore has it.)

If only there were a way for lactose intolerant people to survive, even thrive, without scientists amusing themselves by tinkering with the genetic makeup of cows. If only we could get baby cows the old fashioned way, the way God intended. Using smart phones.

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