Petri Dish Pork Lookin' Purty Good
Dutch scientists are making progress in their quest for petri dish pork - pork muscle grown in vitro for meat.
Just cast your eyes on the delicious photomicrograph shown below, which displays pork grown from stem cells in all its porcine glory.
(Pork grown from stem cells)
The muscle fibers are seen diagonally from lower left to upper right. The blue dots are the nuclei of the cells, the yellow color is the result of an overlay (green and red) of two of the most important proteins in skeletal muscle, actin and myosin.
Dutch scientists have been growing pork in the laboratory since 2006, and while they admit they haven't gotten the texture quite right (the lab-grown meat has the consistency and feel of scallop), they say the technology promises to have widespread implications for our food supply.
"If we took the stem cells from one pig and multiplied it by a factor of a million, we would need one million fewer pigs to get the same amount of meat," said Mark Post, a biologist at Maastricht University involved in the In-vitro Meat Consortium, a network of publicly funded Dutch research institutions that is carrying out the experiments.
SF fans have been salivating for in vitro meat since at least as far back as 1961. In his affable novel Four-Day Planet, H. Beam Piper wrote about carniculture, which provided meat without animals.
I went on telling him about our hydroponic farms, and the carniculture plant where any kind of animal tissue we wanted was grown--Terran pork and beef and poultry, Freyan _zhoumy_ meat, Zarathustran veldtbeest.... He knew, already, that none of the native life-forms, animal or vegetable, were edible by Terrans.
"You can get all the _paté de foie gras_ you want here," I said. "We have a chunk of goose liver about fifty feet in diameter growing in one of our vats."
(Read more about carniculture plants)
Modern-day fans have been enjoying the exploration of this topic presented in works like Margaret Atwood's excellent 2003 novel Oryx and Crake; see the description of ChickieNobs for a mouth-watering look at chicken production - sans chicken.
Via Physorg; thanks so much to the anonymous reader who tipped me off to this story.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 1/18/2010)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 1 )
Related News Stories -
Electronic Tongues Will Rule The Kitchen
'Install taste buds in the end of one tentacle...' - Anthony Boucher, 1943
Mass Production Of In Vitro Meat From One Sample
They're Assimilating Our Culture, That's What They're Doing
Mealworms Food Of The Future
Get your grubs on.
Self-Driving Domino's Pizza Car
Yes, but can it negotiate entry at your Burbclave?
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Las Vegas Humans Ready To Strike Over Robots
'A worker replaced by a nubot... had to be compensated.'
You'll Regrow That Limb, One Day
'... forcing the energy transfer which allowed him to regrow his lost fingers.'
Elon Musk Seeks To Create 1941 Heinlein Speedster
'The car surged and lifted, clearing its top by a negligible margin.'
Somnox Sleep Robot - Your Sleepytime Cuddlebot
Science fiction authors are serious about sleep, too.
Real-Life Macau or Ghost In The Shell
Art imitates life imitates art.
Has Climate Change Already Been Solved By Aliens?
'I had explained," said Nessus, "that our civilisation was dying in its own waste heat.'
First 3D Printed Human Corneas From Stem Cells
Just what we need! Lots of spare parts.
VirtualHome: Teaching Robots To Do Chores Around The House
'Just what did I want Flexible Frank to do? - any work a human being does around a house.'
Messaging Extraterrestrial Intelligence (METI) Workshop
SF writers have thought about this since the 19th century.
Nanorobots Roam Your Bloodstream, Cleaning It
Too bad they won't have lasers, though...
Galini 3D Printed Sleeping Pod Tiny Houses
'The houses are prefabricated units...'
MIT Boffins Create Psychopath AI On Purpose
There's a lesson in this for neural net AI engineers everywhere.
Skin Electronics 3D Printed
'June's body is a tracery of lambent lines, like some arcane capillary circuitry...'
Artificial Sensory Neurons For Prosthetics, Robots
Great for humans and robots!
China Uses Artificial Intelligence To Grade Student Papers
Looks like the City Fathers are starting to take over China's education system.
Electronic Tongues Will Rule The Kitchen
'Install taste buds in the end of one tentacle...'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories