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Science in Seconds - In Vitro Meat

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RAVES - IN VITRO MEAT Dutch scientists can now successfully grow meat from stem cells: a technology that's met with universal optimism from the scientific community, and universal repulsion from the general public. Cell culture chicken? Petri dish pork?! We like our meat to come from the disgusting, salmonella-infested sources we are already used to, like sidewalk hotdog stands, and Spam. But lab-engineered meat has some pretty amazing potential. To make meat in the lab, all you have to do is isolate stem cells from an animal's muscle and allow them to replicate in a nutrient-based media. This means that no animal have to actually die in order for the meat to be grown, and stem cells from one animal could go on to produce thousands of kilograms of meat. This would lower the greenhouse gas emissions by an estimated 95%, thanks to a reduction of methane from industrial livestock, and water and land use for livestock production would also drop by about 95%. It also gives us total control over the nutrient contents of our meat, which means no more hormones or toxins to make cows produce more muscle. Instead, we could infuse lab-produced pork or beef with omega-3 fatty acids and, according to a Johns Hopkins researcher, design a hamburger that prevents heart attacks instead of causing them. Of course, this doesn't answer the most important question: does Petri dish pork taste like pork, or even chicken? So far, no one has actually tasted the lab-grown meat, though its texture is described as squishy and moist, like a scallop. But, due to differences in the protein content, it seems likely that it doesn't taste the same, though scientists are hard at work to correct this. In vitro meat won't be on the market for another 3 to 10 years, but when you've got something that could potentially end climate change, heart disease, and maybe even world hunger, doesn't it seem short-sighted to dismiss it just because it seems gross? On the other hand, they are calling it "shmeat"...

Video Details

Duration: 2 minutes and 29 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
License: All rights reserved
Producer: Science in Seconds
Director: Science in Seconds
Views: 378
Posted by: tradottiinitaliano on Jul 22, 2011

Can in vitro meat save the world?

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