Gene Editing Makes Cows Without Horns

Cattle have now been made hornless through genetic editing, with no apparent side effects, researchers say.

In the United States, roughly 80 percent of all calves raised for dairy and 25 percent of beef cattle get their horns removed every year — that’s 4.8 million and 8.75 million head of cattle, respectively. Dehorning helps protect animals and their handlers from accidental injuries, but it’s not only costly, it’s painful to animals, and numerous animal advocacy groups have campaigned for either mandatory anesthesia during dehorning or a complete end to the practice. “Dehorning animals is a bloody and painful process that no one likes to do,” notes William Muir, a professor of genetics at Purdue University.

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