The first genetically modified squid is born clear after scientists “knock out” a pigmentation gene in embryos that controls the color of eye and skin cells
- For the first time in history, scientists have genetically modified a squid embryo
- The team’s pigmentation genes in Doryteuthis vastuii make it transparent
- This will allow researchers to explore a unique system of being
For the first time in history, scientists have genetically modified squid embryos by removing a pigmentation gene that has resulted in transparent creatures.
The team used CRISPR-Cas9 to “eradicate” the Doryteuthis pealii gene, which in turn removed staining from eye and skin cells.
During the procedure, the hard outer layer of the egg was cut with microscissors and the reagents were delivered inside the embryo.
Cephalopods, including squid, octopus and cuttlefish, have been a mystery to researchers because their nervous systems are capable of masking, but the breakthrough should “solve many biological issues.”
For the first time in history, scientists have genetically modified squid embryos by removing a pigmentation gene that has resulted in transparent creatures. The team used CRISPR-Cas9 to knock out the pigmentation genes Doryteuthis vastuii, which in turn removed the color of the eyes and skin cells.
Cephalopods have the largest brains of all invertebrates, a nervous system capable of hiding themselves, and a special ability to transcode their genetic information inside their messenger RNA – and, of course, they all have rare and interesting traits.
Scientists have long tried to uncover the secrets of these creatures, but have failed due to their inability to engage in their structures – to this day.
Joshua Rosenthal, a researcher at the University of Chicago’s Marine Biology Laboratory, NPR, said: “They developed this big brain and this sophistication of behavior completely independently.”
“It gives us the opportunity to compare them to us and see which elements are common and which elements are unique.”
Cephalopods, including squid, octopus and cuttlefish, have been a mystery to researchers because their nervous systems are able to mask, but the breakthrough should “solve many biological issues.”
Rosenthal and his team began their journey by introducing the CRISPR-Cas system to a single-cell embryo.
However, they met the first challenge because it is surrounded by a solid layer that protects the embryo until it is ready to hatch.
The team constructed a special pair of microscissors to trim the surface of the egg and used a quartz needle to deliver CRISPR-Cas9 reagents.
Genetically modified squid, which look like creatures of this world, was born with fully transparent, porous, transparent eyes.
Earlier this year, the scientist shared separate information about a mysterious giant squid.
Scientists published in January the entire sequence of the giant squid genome, which is like a hint of the creature’s high intelligence.
An international research team has found that their genes look similar to other animals – their genomes are not very far behind humans.
The squid, Architeuthius dux, has the same eyes as dinner plates and tentacles that seize prey from 10 yards away.
Its average length is about 33 feet – about the size of a medium-sized school bus.
The photo does not replace the adult Doryteuthis eesii, often referred to as Woods Hole squid
However, these legendary creatures are hard to spot and rarely noticeable, making them difficult to investigate.
An international team of researchers is now fully planning the genome of the species to answer key questions about evolution.
They discovered that the giant squid genome has about 2.7 billion pairs of DNA bases – fused chemicals on opposite sides of DNA strands.
That’s about 90 percent of the size of the human genome – we have about 3 billion.
Although the size of the genome does not necessarily equate to intelligence, it can show characteristics such as the rate of cell division, body size, rate of development, and even the risk of extinction.