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Phosphorescent Felines Fight AIDS
http://news.discovery.com ^ | Mon Sep 12, 2011 12:59 PM ET | Analysis by Tim Wall

Posted on 09/13/2011 11:13:45 AM PDT by Red Badger

Black cats may be unlucky, but what about a glowing cat?

Phosphorescent felines were created by Mayo Clinic researchers to help in the fight against AIDS in both cats and humans. The cats were genetically engineered to carry a protein that defends them from infection by the feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV), the cat version of HIV.

The cats glow because of a jellyfish gene inserted along with the FIV-resistance gene. If the genetically modified mouser glowed an eerie green, the researchers knew it was also resistant to FIV.

"One of the best things about this biomedical research is that it is aimed at benefiting both human and feline health," says Eric Poeschla, molecular biologist at the Mayo Clinic and lead author of the study published in Nature Methods.

"It can help cats as much as people," said Poeschla in a press release.

The gene that protected the transgenic tabbies from FIV was originally from a type of monkey, the rhesus macaque. Since cross-breeding a cat and a monkey was impossible (not to mention even weirder and creepier than a glowing cat) the scientists had to use genetic engineering to put the rhesus' genetic pieces into the cats.

They used a technique known as gamete-targeted lentiviral transgenesis. The tongue-twister technique involved inserting the desired gene into the cat's eggs before sperm fertilization.

The resulting kittens produced the macaque's protein, a restriction factor known as TRIMCyp, as well as the jellyfish's glow in the dark chemical, known as green fluorescent protein.

Glowing cat face Not only did the first generation of kittens come out luminescent and FIV-resistant, the new genes were passed on to their offspring. The phosphorescent fur-balls were healthy and thriving, report the Mayo Clinic scientists.

Though this technique is not a direct treatment for FIV, HIV, or AIDS, it will help researchers understand how the proteins known as restriction factors can be used in gene therapy. Since FIV is similar to HIV, the luminescent cats could shed light on treatments for both diseases.

As cool as having a glowing cat would be, don't expect to see phosphorescent felines at the pet store. Genetically engineering pets is highly controversial, and the Mayo researchers made these cats solely to help the fight against AIDS, not to be awesome additions to a Halloween party.

IMAGES:

One of the glowing cats from the Mayo Clinic study (Mayo Clinic)

The paw of a glowing cat (Mayo Clinic)


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society
KEYWORDS: aids; cat; hiv; kittyping; medicine
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1 posted on 09/13/2011 11:13:48 AM PDT by Red Badger
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To: Red Badger; Darksheare
It's the Cat of the Baskervilles!

I'm sure Darks in involved in this somewhere...

2 posted on 09/13/2011 11:16:00 AM PDT by null and void (Day 966 of America's holiday from reality...)
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To: Slings and Arrows
P I N G
3 posted on 09/13/2011 11:17:17 AM PDT by martin_fierro (< |:)~)
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To: Red Badger

Not what I want to see at 4 AM when the food dish is empty...


4 posted on 09/13/2011 11:18:17 AM PDT by El Sordo (The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.)
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To: null and void

In Asia it’s called ‘candlelight dinner’...........


5 posted on 09/13/2011 11:18:41 AM PDT by Red Badger ("Treason doth never prosper.... What's the reason? Why if it prosper, none dare call it treason.")
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To: Red Badger

Can you imagine being at a party in San Francisco with the lights out.


6 posted on 09/13/2011 11:20:22 AM PDT by chainsaw (I'd hate to be a democrat running against Sarah Palin.)
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To: Red Badger

You gotta love it when a puss* lights up at night.....


7 posted on 09/13/2011 11:21:59 AM PDT by astounded (Barack Obama is a clear and present danger to the USA)
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To: El Sordo

LOL!! I was gonna say, at least no tripping over the cat in the dark!


8 posted on 09/13/2011 11:24:18 AM PDT by Newton (If Obama is the answer it's probably a stupid question.)
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To: chainsaw

No...........


9 posted on 09/13/2011 11:24:23 AM PDT by Red Badger ("Treason doth never prosper.... What's the reason? Why if it prosper, none dare call it treason.")
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To: Red Badger

That is just freaky.


10 posted on 09/13/2011 11:27:00 AM PDT by Tijeras_Slim
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To: Red Badger

11 posted on 09/13/2011 11:28:17 AM PDT by frithguild (We admitted we were powerless over government - that out lives had become unmanageable)
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To: Red Badger

I’m against experimenting on animals for the benefit IV drug users and sodomites, whose lifestyle choices led to their ailment.


12 posted on 09/13/2011 11:30:11 AM PDT by Retired Greyhound
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To: Red Badger

My husband, who is not crazy about our rather feral puddy cat, jumped in horror when he saw this. He could only imagine our cat - claws and fangs extended - also being bright green.


13 posted on 09/13/2011 11:31:29 AM PDT by miss marmelstein (Run, Sarah, Run! Please!)
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To: Tijeras_Slim

You just know some of those cats will eventually get loose.........


14 posted on 09/13/2011 11:31:55 AM PDT by Red Badger ("Treason doth never prosper.... What's the reason? Why if it prosper, none dare call it treason.")
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To: Red Badger

"eeeeyikes,looks like my ex"

15 posted on 09/13/2011 11:32:24 AM PDT by Doogle ((USAF.68-73..8th TFW Ubon Thailand..never store a threat you should have eliminated))
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To: martin_fierro; Slings and Arrows; Glenn; republicangel; Beaker; BADROTOFINGER; etabeta; ...

16 posted on 09/13/2011 11:32:44 AM PDT by Slings and Arrows (You can't have Ingsoc without an Emmanuel Goldstein.)
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To: null and void; Red Badger

It’s not science if it isn’t mad science.


17 posted on 09/13/2011 11:32:59 AM PDT by Darksheare (You will never defeat Bok Choy!)
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To: Tijeras_Slim
Well...we took a vote and the EYES have it!


18 posted on 09/13/2011 11:42:03 AM PDT by Young Werther (Julius Caesar said "Quae cum ita sunt. Since these things are so.".)
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To: Red Badger

Green cats are cool.


19 posted on 09/13/2011 11:42:44 AM PDT by swain_forkbeard (Rationality may not be sufficient, but it is necessary.)
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To: swain_forkbeard

They go good with green eggs and ham...............


20 posted on 09/13/2011 11:45:42 AM PDT by Red Badger ("Treason doth never prosper.... What's the reason? Why if it prosper, none dare call it treason.")
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To: Red Badger

“the Mayo researchers made these cats solely to help the fight against AIDS, not to be awesome additions to a Halloween party”

I hate it when doctors try to tell us how to live our lives.
Next thing you know, we’ll have a phosphorescence tax.


21 posted on 09/13/2011 11:46:10 AM PDT by fruser1
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To: Newton

Exactly. This is a great advance in pet technology!

On the other paw, I wonder if it reduces their effectiveness as mousers.


22 posted on 09/13/2011 11:47:07 AM PDT by Hunton Peck (See my FR homepage for a list of businesses that support WI Gov. Scott Walker)
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To: Red Badger

I MUST have one!

Where can I obtain one of these phosphorescent cats?


23 posted on 09/13/2011 11:49:26 AM PDT by WayneS (Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm. -- James Madison)
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To: WayneS

The Mayo Clinic...........


24 posted on 09/13/2011 11:53:24 AM PDT by Red Badger ("Treason doth never prosper.... What's the reason? Why if it prosper, none dare call it treason.")
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To: Retired Greyhound

but... ...it’s a GLOW IN THE DARK cat!

What’s not to like?

;-)


25 posted on 09/13/2011 11:55:33 AM PDT by WayneS (Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm. -- James Madison)
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To: Red Badger

Good one!


26 posted on 09/13/2011 11:56:40 AM PDT by WayneS (Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm. -- James Madison)
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To: Red Badger

Now if we could just get all of the HIV carriers to glow an eerie green, I’m sure that HIV spread will be greatly contained.


27 posted on 09/13/2011 11:58:28 AM PDT by DannyTN
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To: Hunton Peck
I wonder if it reduces their effectiveness as mousers.

I doubt they are very good mousers, they're not all that bright...

28 posted on 09/13/2011 11:58:33 AM PDT by null and void (Day 966 of America's holiday from reality...)
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To: Red Badger

Does this mean that people who end up being cured of AIDS will glow in the dark?


29 posted on 09/13/2011 11:59:39 AM PDT by WayneS (Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm. -- James Madison)
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To: DannyTN

The purple spots (kaposi’s sarcoma) didn’t...


30 posted on 09/13/2011 12:00:58 PM PDT by null and void (Day 966 of America's holiday from reality...)
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To: Red Badger

31 posted on 09/13/2011 12:01:55 PM PDT by ClearCase_guy (The USSR spent itself into bankruptcy and collapsed -- and aren't we on the same path now?)
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To: DannyTN

If I understand this right, if you glow green, like the cats do, you are immune..................


32 posted on 09/13/2011 12:06:29 PM PDT by Red Badger ("Treason doth never prosper.... What's the reason? Why if it prosper, none dare call it treason.")
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To: WayneS

That’s what it implies.........


33 posted on 09/13/2011 12:07:54 PM PDT by Red Badger ("Treason doth never prosper.... What's the reason? Why if it prosper, none dare call it treason.")
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To: miss marmelstein

Cats do not pass on HIV to humans.

I have an HIV positive kitty cat, and she is wonderful.

She has had it for about 10 years. The vet is on top of it. Anytime she starts to feel bad, my vet comes to my house to keep her from going into AIDS.


34 posted on 09/13/2011 12:07:54 PM PDT by Gatún(CraigIsaMangoTreeLawyer)
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To: GatĂșn(CraigIsaMangoTreeLawyer)

Sigh. I was simply joking about my husband being afraid of my - admittedly - somewhat unloveable feral cat that I’ve owned and cared for for about 12 years now. Poor thing.

I never said anything about HIV being passed from cats to humans.


35 posted on 09/13/2011 12:16:41 PM PDT by miss marmelstein (Run, Sarah, Run! Please!)
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To: null and void
"I doubt they are very good mousers, they're not all that bright..."


36 posted on 09/13/2011 12:20:16 PM PDT by Hunton Peck (See my FR homepage for a list of businesses that support WI Gov. Scott Walker)
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To: Red Badger

Yeah, I was suggesting that all they need to do is turn it around and make the carriers glow green. Or I suppose you could just brand their foreheads with HIV.


37 posted on 09/13/2011 12:22:43 PM PDT by DannyTN
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To: Red Badger

Yeah, I was suggesting that all they need to do is turn it around and make the carriers glow green as a warning to others. Or I suppose you could just brand their foreheads with the letters HIV.


38 posted on 09/13/2011 12:23:04 PM PDT by DannyTN
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To: miss marmelstein

Thank you MM.

Absolutely not....I was just passing on some information in general because maybe some folks think cats can pass on HIV to humans.

That was only my intention.

Please forgive any misunderstanding. In no way was it meant toward you or anybody else.


39 posted on 09/13/2011 12:27:45 PM PDT by Gatún(CraigIsaMangoTreeLawyer)
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To: Retired Greyhound

Worth it to fight FIV, though.


40 posted on 09/13/2011 12:28:20 PM PDT by Excellence ( CTRL-GALT-DELETE)
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To: miss marmelstein

P.S.

My love to your kitty cat and your family.


41 posted on 09/13/2011 12:31:57 PM PDT by Gatún(CraigIsaMangoTreeLawyer)
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To: Excellence
Worth it to fight FIV, though.

Yes, I agree. Plus the kitties look cool.

42 posted on 09/13/2011 12:32:31 PM PDT by Retired Greyhound
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To: GatĂșn(CraigIsaMangoTreeLawyer)

Oh, that’s OK. I’m a little sensitive today because I keep getting beat up on other threads. Take care!


43 posted on 09/13/2011 12:33:12 PM PDT by miss marmelstein (Run, Sarah, Run! Please!)
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To: GatĂșn(CraigIsaMangoTreeLawyer)

And to yours.


44 posted on 09/13/2011 12:34:05 PM PDT by miss marmelstein (Run, Sarah, Run! Please!)
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To: Slings and Arrows

45 posted on 09/13/2011 12:36:34 PM PDT by Daffynition (Obama's job plan is that it's all designed as a desperate effort to save just one job: his own)
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To: miss marmelstein

“Oh, that’s OK. I’m a little sensitive today because I keep getting beat up on other threads. Take care!”

Give them hell.

I’ll watch your back.


46 posted on 09/13/2011 12:36:37 PM PDT by Gatún(CraigIsaMangoTreeLawyer)
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To: GatĂșn(CraigIsaMangoTreeLawyer)

Oh, thanks! I’m always in trouble at FR, I’m afraid.


47 posted on 09/13/2011 12:51:25 PM PDT by miss marmelstein (Run, Sarah, Run! Please!)
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To: miss marmelstein

“Oh, thanks! I’m always in trouble at FR, I’m afraid.”

Don’t be afraid. Just give them hell. No one knows who you are.

If you lived in Panama (RP), I would give you lessons on giving jerks hell. There is no science to it.

They don’t know you and you don’t know them, so just blast away.


48 posted on 09/13/2011 1:45:49 PM PDT by Gatún(CraigIsaMangoTreeLawyer)
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To: GatĂșn(CraigIsaMangoTreeLawyer)

You may not remember, but we were once on a thread that was all about a book with a kid who went to heaven and got to meet Jesus. Remember? Not for him meeting St. Peter at the Pearly Gates - nope, straight to the top man. We were fighting off the dopes who were believing this fraud.

Do you remember that? We had some fun that day!


49 posted on 09/13/2011 1:50:54 PM PDT by miss marmelstein (Run, Sarah, Run! Please!)
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To: Slings and Arrows; Red Badger; WayneS

Do they spontaneously glow in the dark, or do they need a UV light? Or maybe they have to sit out in the sun all day to glow for a while at night?

Fascinated persons want to know.


50 posted on 09/13/2011 1:52:26 PM PDT by TheOldLady
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