Zebra danios modified to carry vaccines

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Dr Zhiyuan Gong from the National University of Singapore has developed genetically modified Zebra danios that produce vaccines in their muscle tissue.

The scientist, who is best known for his work on producing transgenic danios which glow in the dark, placed non-danio genes into the fish so they produce a vaccine for hepatatis B.

During his work on producing transgenic danios, Dr Gong found that the fish produced large amounts of the protein encoded by a gene inserted from the genetic material of a jellyfish.

Previous work on using transgenic animals to produce vaccines has not been that successful since the amount of protein produced has not been high enough. It is hoped that the Danio will produce similarly large quantities of vaccine protein.