Story: Knowledge-based industries

Auckland Island pigs, 2008

These unique pigs are descended from animals released on the subantarctic Auckland Islands in the 19th century to provide food for shipwrecked sailors. They have recently become international pin-ups for bioprospecting. Isolated from people and other pigs for a long time, they are the only pigs in the world with cells that can be used to help provide a cure for type-1 diabetes in humans. Now bred in a specially-built multi-million dollar centre in Invercargill, they are used to produce medicines for sale worldwide.

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How to cite this page:

Mark Derby, 'Knowledge-based industries - Biotechnology research', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 20 August 2022)

Story by Mark Derby, published 11 Mar 2010, reviewed & revised 5 Dec 2017