Anorak News | Scientists Create First Mentally Ill Mouse

Scientists Create First Mentally Ill Mouse

by | 29th, July 2007

HOW do scientists at John Hopkins University in Baltimore know it’s the world’s first schizophrenic mouse? And how does the Times know?

SCIENTISTS have created the world’s first schizophrenic mice in an attempt to gain a better understanding of the illness.

It is believed to be the first time an animal has been genetically engineered to have a mental illness. Until now they have been bred only for research into physical conditions such as heart disease. It will allow researchers to study the disease and develop treatments using a limitless supply of laboratory animals.

Animal rights campaigners have condemned the research, saying that it is morally repugnant to create an animal doomed to mental suffering.

The mice were created by modifying their DNA to mimic a mutant gene first found in a Scottish family with a high incidence of schizophrenia, which affects about one in every 100 people. The mice’s brains were found to have features similar to those of humans with schizophrenia, such as depression and hyperactivity.

Posted: 29th, July 2007 | In: Reviews Comments (2) | TrackBack | Permalink