September 15 2011

Glowing Kittens

Here in Rochester, researchers used a lentivirus to carry genes into the eggs of a cat. In particular, one of the genes encodes for a fluorescent protein. This isn’t just for fun, the ‘fluorescent gene’ provides for an easy way to tell if the gene implantation was successful.
In any case, the next time I’m at the clinic and the doctor asks if I have any questions, I now have–“Yes, do you happen to have any extra glowing cats around?”

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Posted September 15, 2011 by user in category "Interesting stuff


  1. By EEGiorgi on

    I did see this in the news, and I remember thinking, “Aw, poor kitties!” But then who knows, it may turn out to be an advantageous trait when they cross the street at night, and it will be selected for, and in a few years we’ll have hoards of fluorescent kittens roaming the city streets… Hehe, sorry, maybe not quite like that, still… 🙂

    1. By Steven Halter (Post author) on

      I had kind of the same first reaction–poor kittens. On the other hand I quickly also had the reaction Glowing kittens!
      I’m guessing they will quickly learn to harness their new “power” escape and come to dominate the planet. I will welcome our new kitten overlords.

      It does sound like the actual research has some promise with preventing feline leukemia and maybe some applicability to the HIV research you have been doing. Clearly you should get some of these kittens.


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