Goat Created with Malaria Vaccine in Milk

Researchers at Texas A & M University have genetically engineered a goat so it creates malaria vaccine in its milk.

They are still in a preliminary stage and after many tests, it will be determined if the goats milk is safe for human consumption. They also need to see if the malaria vaccine production capability is passed on from their adult test goat to its offspring. If everything goes according to plan, the idea would be to place these vaccine producing goats in villages around Africa so people could simply drink goats’ milk and get immunized.

Currently, malaria drugs are stolen, sold illegally, and sold when expired, even as thousands of people are dying from the disease. Additionally, it can become resistant to a single drug treatment, so the World Health Organization recommends using drug combinations. Preventing the disease via delivery of an effective vaccine in a low-cost local manner could be very beneficial.

In 2011 there were 216 million cases of malaria and an estimated 655,000 deaths in 2010. Most of these cases occur in Sub-Saharan Africa. In countries heavily impacted by malaria there is a large economic toll. Up to 40% of public health expenditures and 50% of inpatient hospital admissions result from malaria.

About half of the world’s human population are at risk for malaria. One research vaccine against P. falciparum, known as RTS,S/AS01, is being tested in a large clinical trial in 7 countries in Africa.

Image Credit: Jason Pratt


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James S.
Jamea S.3 years ago

"Why do some commenters think this is scary? Are you not aware that every mother in the world passes on a variety of immunity-granting antibodies through her own breast milk?" Juliet - Does this happen naturally or through a genetically engineered being?

joyce dean
joyce D.3 years ago

Also please consider vaccine associated pet cancers, vaccines linked to autism...
O & if you drink milk - RBST free only...
actually only raw natural milk is 'safe' - even good for you (studies have shown it may combat diseases!) - but demonized by the government control "for our own good" so that choice is not even available in many places!
But genetically modified milk is A OK?

joyce dean
joyce D.3 years ago

1st, GOATS are not being created with... they are being genetically MANipulated to produce "vaccines" in their milk... which seems dangerous and irresponsible, as we can not know other effects of these genetic manipulations, and "vaccines" are not all equal in effect, the cumulative effects of a vaccination in conjunction with other environmental factors (such as other vaccines) may exponentially manifest, & often the very 'evil' intended to combat may adapt, after which evolves a nullified reaction to said "solution" & a stronger, bigger problem to address... ALSO we HAVE the technology, for the vaccinations that may be distributed to those as chosen; access to existing solution & allowance for choice is what we should be advocating.

Neil A.
Neil A.3 years ago

I would like to know more where did they get the immunity gene, but does seem good on the surface, however I am usually against GMas with Monstersanto etc.

Diane L.
Diane L.3 years ago

Sorry, Gloria, but I highly disagree with you about treating malaria with "homeopathy". If that worked, millions of lives would not be lost to this deadly disease every year.

This sounds very promising, but it also bothers me about genetically modifying any animal for any reason. Even IF the milk is effective at preventing the disease, how will it be regulated as to who drinks it and what will the effects be for the young of the female goat who drink it? What will the side-effects be for humans who don't have the disease, won't be exposed or have a compromised immune system in some way or other issues?

Gloria Morotti
Gloria Morotti3 years ago

I can't believe this. Everything about it is insane. Vaccines are bad news, all the way around. Goat's milk is GOOD for people, certainly better than cow's milk. For malaria, try homeopathy. It works. I feel truly sorry for the people here who have suffered with malaria and other illnesses and are waiting for mainstream medicine to come up with a "cure." Mainstream medicine causes more diseases than it cures, if it cures any. Read the history of mainstream medicine; you will be flabbergasted.

Mary L.
Mary L.3 years ago

I'm torn. With the coming of the end of antibiotics we have to do something or die. I'm torn.

Anne K.
Anne K.3 years ago

Juliet D. - Yes, we are aware of the naturally occurring benefits of breast milk for the babies it was meant to feed. GMO goats are a different matter.

Anne K.
Anne K.3 years ago

Better idea - put human birth control in goats' (and cows') milk.

Marie W.
Marie W.3 years ago

Raises questions.