The main feature of the human brain that allowed our species to learn to speak and create a civilization, an enlarged neocortex. This region of the brain that we have abnormally large (in comparison with other mammals, including monkeys). But science never sleeps, and we may soon cease to be the only species on the planet, spending your mental potential to view lions in the Internet.
Scientists from Central Institute for experimental animals in Kawasaki and Keio University (Japan) jointly with their German colleagues from Institute of molecular cell biology and genetics, max Planck Society with the help of genetic engineering created monkeysthe brain which was closer to human, he also has an abnormally large neocortex. Unfortunately (or fortunately), due to ethical barriers, the researchers did not allow them to be born, interrupting the development of transgenic calves for 50 days before giving birth.
The unpredictable impact of the modification on brain function [трансгенных обезьян] we considered mandatory from an ethical point of view first, to determine the effect of ARHGAP11B on the development of the neocortex of monkeys in the fetus, — explained the decision to prevent the birth of GMO-young Wieland Huttner, the head of research.
Increase of the neocortex was achieved through genetic modification of embryos. In their genome were added to the gene ARHGAP11B. This is one of the key genes responsible for increased production of stem cells in the human brain during its development. ARHGAP11B unique to the individual. No other animals, including monkeys, it is not.
According to scientists, ARHGAP11B arose by a mutation about 5 million years ago, with the result that made possible the emergence of the Neanderthals, Denisovsky man and CRO-magnon.
Previously, “Ridus” reported on yet one recent success of scientists-geneticiststhat found a gene associated with thinness.