As EU red tape is reduced to generate chicken immunity, Britain will be able to avoid bird flu.
According to experts, British scientists who are not bound by EU regulations will soon be able to manufacture genetically engineered hens that are immune to bird flu.
Following a large outbreak of avian influenza (bird flu) last winter, the UK was declared clear of the disease early last month. At least four strains of the virus, which is carried by birds of all shapes and sizes, have caused health alarms in the United Kingdom in the last 24 years. Bird flu has made the leap from animals to humans, much like the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, and thrives in places like poultry farms, where thousands of animals are in direct and close contact.
The UK’s Chief Veterinary Officer, Christine Middlemiss, said in September that the country must be watchful as “The disease has a persistent risk of returning to our borders via wild birds.”
He continued, ” “Clean footwear, feed birds indoors, and avoid contact with wild birds are all sound biosecurity practices for poultry and captive bird caretakers.
“Incorporating these easy activities into daily routines today will go a long way toward reducing the likelihood of future outbreaks,” says the author.
However, a group of geneticists on the outskirts of Edinburgh may have discovered an unique answer to the bird flu problem.
They want to change chickens’ DNA to give them genetic immunity to the avian flu virus.
The announcement comes after Environment Secretary George Eustice said that the UK would abandon European Union regulations on genetically modified plants and animals.
Crops are the primary focus of genetic modification technology, which aims to make them more resistant to bad weather and illnesses.
However, researchers all across the world are investigating how gene-modifying Crispr technology could aid the livestock industry as well.
However, there are several problems that scientists must first address.
Professor Helen Sang, head of the Division of Developmental Biology at the University of Edinburgh’s Roslin Institute, believes that scientists must ensure that their trials do not cause more harm than good.
She told The New York Times: “If you’re giving resistance to a virus like flu, you have to make sure you don’t have an unintended consequence, such as allowing the virus to mutate in a way that makes it easier to infect people.
“There’s a lot to consider in terms of how you’d go about it. “Brinkwire Summary News “..