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Friday, August 28, 2009

More on Stumpy the duck

Ages ago I reported on Stumpy the four legged duck.

Stumpy is still alive but he is now a two-legged duck, he lost one of his extra legs in 2007 when he caught it on a fence and the drake became a regular two-legged duck when his third leg also fell off in April last year.

However scientists from the University of Chicago are now studying blood taken from Stumpy.

According to Stumpy's owner Nicky Janaway:

When Stumpy was first born I got an email from Paul Wakenight at the University of Chicago. He said they were keen to get a small tissue sample from Stumpy to help with their studies into genetic mutations in humans.

Recently all our ducks were tested for bird flu and so I arranged for a blood sample to be taken during the flu testing. I contacted Paul to tell him and he was delighted. Apparently they are at a vital stage in their testing and are almost at the breakthrough stage.

The blood sample was sent out by courier the next day and within a year the scientists expect to publish the findings of their study.

It would be nice to know why Stumpy's mutation occurred but more importantly it would be lovely to know Stumpy had made a valuable contribution to studies that could explain genetic mutations in humans.

Paul Wakenight said:

The real value of Stumpy's DNA is that it will help us understand the fundamentals of development. Finding the genes that cause this mutation may be a big clue

1 comment:

Tricia said...

What a fascinating occurrence. Good to hear that Stumpy's doing well, and helping the scientists and mankind too.