Hilariously, disturbingly, and perhaps inevitably, scientists have found a way to make cats glow in the dark. Surprisingly, though, this development isn't so much for the enjoyment of internet denizens as it is for AIDS research.
You see, our furry glow-in-the-dark friends (their names are TgCat1, TgCat2, and TgCat3, in case you were wondering) come to us courtesy of the Mayo Clinic, where researchers combined rhesus-macaque genes with those of jellyfish, then implanted them in unfertilized cat eggs. The resulting cats were both resistant to the feline immunodeficiency virus that leads to feline AIDS and produced a fluorescent glow in certain lighting.
Technically this process doesn't cure cats of FIV (which is to say, HIV for cats), but it does make it easier for scientists to track (and thus study) modified genes and cells. "We want to see if we can protect the domestic cat against its AIDS virus, if we can protect any species, eventually including ours, against its own AIDS virus," explained one of the researchers.
And just like that, my new dream pet was
created in a lab born.