Tank Accessory Must Have

28 November 2004
Posted by Chris Smith.

How do you like the idea of having a real gold-fish. Not just an orange one, but one that really glows gold in the dark ? Because that's exactly what a Taiwan-based company have developed by genetically manipulating normal fish so that they carry a fluorescent gene from jellyfish. Last year they produced a popular brand of neon-glowing fish, but now they have taken things a step further and produced a fish that genuinely glows gold. Whilst it may sound impressive, environmentalists remain sceptic that there may be dangers surrounding these genetically modified fish, especially if they were to escape and begin interbreeding with wild-type fish stocks. However, the company claim that they have made the fish sterile, so they wouldn't be able to breed even if they were to survive in the wild, which they say is unlikely. Nonetheless, it is still worrying that there are no controls in Taiwan to regulate the release of genetically modified organisms - and even though it is thought to be safe, we really don't know enough about the technology to be sure. If wild fish began to glow gold though, it's unlikely they'd last very long ! It would be like wearing a fluorescent jacket on a battlefield and waving a banner saying shoot me !

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