Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Meow, meow, meow

Whatcha lookin' at?!?!?
I heard this article on the radio a couple of years ago and decided to look at it again for some reason. The name of the article is "Glowing Kittens Help in Fighting AIDS".

The idea behind this article is that you have a mixture consisting of monkey genes, used to block the HIV infection, and jellyfish genes, used to see whether the gene concoction was taken up by the cells. This concoction is injected into cat eggs. When the cat is growing up, the cat will produce the proteins that are feline "AIDS-resistant". In order to tell whether the kitten is feline AIDS resistant, you shine a blue light, in the dark, on these little critters and they glow green.These genes are passed on to the offspring; thus, protecting the offspring from feline AIDS as well.

Using these kittens as a model system, one of the doctors, Dr. Eric Poeschla, is hoping that they can get insight into how to human gene therapy can use this technology.

As a side note, who wouldn't want a glow-in-the-dark cat?... Or any glow-in-the-dark pet, if you happen to be allergic to cats.

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