Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Glow In The Dark Cats

South Korean scientists have cloned cats that glow red under ultraviolet light, as part of research aimed at developing treatments for human genetic diseases. A team of scientists led by Professor Kong Il-keun, a cloning expert at Gyeongsang National University in Jinju, produced three glowing Turkish Angoras cats. According to the Korea Times, the scientists added red fluorescence protein (RFP) genes to the skin cells of the mother cat. They then inserted the skin cells into ova to produce cloned cats genetically modified to contain the RFP gene.

The ability to produce cloned cats with the manipulated genes is significant as it could be used for developing treatments for genetic diseases and for reproducing model [cloned] animals suffering from the same diseases as humans. Cats have similar genes to those of humans and because of this it is possible to make genetically modified cats that can be used to develop new cures for genetic diseases.

No comments: