Sheep in Research
The USDA reported that 10,315 sheep were used in research protocols in 2014, which represents an 11% decrease from the previous year. Historically, sheep have served as models of major physiological systems, including reproductive, endocrine, cardiovascular, neuroanatomical, and neurophysiological systems. They have also been used to study fetal development. The large size of the sheep has enabled its use in studies involving implanting medical devices.
The Roslin Institute of Edinburgh, Scotland used sheep in the genetics research that produced the first mammal cloned from an adult cell, Dolly, who made international headlines in 1996.
Sheep blood is used as a medium for culturing bacteria. Sheep are also genetically modified to become bioreactors, generating products such as human proteins in their milk and have also been modified in ways that have improved their wool production.