Cats Are Destined to Be Treated as Horribly as Lab Mice Now That Vivisectors Are Able to Clone Them with Altered Genes
"Cats have similar genes to those of humans. We can make genetically modified cats that can be used to develop new cures for genetic diseases."
-- Professor Kong Il-keun
Vivisectors in South Korea proudly announced in early December that they had become the first to clone cats with altered genes. This monstrous development clears the way for biomedical researchers to genetically modify cats at will, like lab mice, either to study human maladies or just for the money, prestige, and sadistic thrills that they derive from doing so.
Besides vivisectors, breeders of lab cats also will reap a bonanza from this development. These unfortunate animals, who already spend their entire lives in cages, will now be injected with all sorts of malignant genetic material in order to cause them to develop hideous diseases and grotesque deformities.
Their lives, like those of all laboratory animals, will be pure hell from womb to tomb. This is only the beginning of the horrors that H.G. Welles foresaw when he wrote in The Island of Doctor Moreau that the "study of nature makes a man at least as remorseless as nature."
Cats are already systematically manipulated, tortured and, ultimately, killed by vivisectors all over the world. They are used in biomedical research to study, inter alia, spinal cord injuries, strokes and heart disease, gangliosidosis, eye diseases such as glaucoma and amblyopia, AIDS, neurological disorders, diabetes, narcolepsy, and Alzheimer's.
The Koreans' scientific breakthrough along with the National Cancer Institute's decoding of the feline genome earlier last year are going to lead to the wholesale slaughter of additional millions of felines if these diabolical monsters are not stopped. (See Cat Defender post of November 5, 2007 entitled "Decoding the Feline Genome Provides Vivisectors with Thousands of New Excuses to Continue Torturing Cats in the Course of Their Bogus Research.")
Kong gave the game away when he told Memphis' Commercial Appeal on December 15th that "cats have similar genes to those of humans." (See "Glow-in-the-Dark Felines Aren't Just for Show.") "We can make genetically modified cats that can be used to develop new cures for genetic diseases."
Furthermore, he is quoted in the January 2nd edition of The Independent as saying, "The technology used to produce cloned cats with manipulated genes can be applied to clone animals suffering from the same diseases as humans." (See "Bizarre Experiments: Why Did They Do That?")
Vivisectors like to claim that cats, too, will indirectly benefit from their hideous experiments. In particular, they argue that their research will not only produce cures for feline diseases but also help to save endangered wild cats, both big and small.
That is pure rubbish. Even if new cures are incidentally discovered along the way only wealthy cat owners will be able to take advantage of them because of the prohibitively high fees charged by veterinarians. Moreover, wild cats can only be saved by preserving their habitats. (See Cat Defender post of January 28, 2008 entitled "Hopped Up on Vodka and Pot, Trio Taunted Tatiana Prior to Attacks That Led to Her Being Killed by Police.")
Cloned cats are, of course, nothing new. The first one, CC (shorthand for either "Copy Cat" or "Carbon Copy") was created at Texas A&M in 2003. (See Cat Defender posts of January 5, 2007 and October 16, 2006 entitled, respectively, "World's First Cloned Cat, CC, Finally Gives Birth to Three Healthy Kittens at the Age of Five" and "Unable to Turn a Profit, California Cat-Cloning Company Goes Out of Business.")
Other cats also have been genetically altered in order to make them allergy-free. (See Cat Defender posts of October 10, 2006 and July 10, 2006 entitled, respectively, "Dodgy Allerca and Dishonest CBS Join Forces to Market an Allergy-Free Cat Named Joshua to a Gullible Public" and "More Devilry from Scientific Community as California Company Creates World's First Hypoallergenic Cat.")
In order to test their revolutionary theory, Professor Kong and his colleagues at Gyeongsang National University in Jinju took a phosphorescent protein known as RFP and added it to skin cells removed from a mother cat. The skin cells were then transplanted to the cat's ovum before it was in turn transferred to a donor cat.
During January and February of 2007 either three or four Turkish Angora cats were born via cesarean section. (See photo at the top of the page.) News reports differ as to both the exact number of kittens born and surrogate mothers used.
Anyway, either one or two of the kittens died either during birth or shortly thereafter. Of the two kittens that survived, at least one of them glows red when viewed under ultraviolet light. In the photo immediately above, the cat on the left has been genetically altered while the one on the right is described by the researchers as a "normal cloned cat."
The kittens were later killed by Kong and his team so that necropsies could be performed on them. Most likely the mother cats and surrogate mothers were also killed. Gratitude and compassion have never been part of the thought process of vivisectors.
There is some disagreement as to why the vivisectors chose to phosphoresce cats in order to prove their theory. Writing in The Independent, Simon Usborne states that glow cats are of no scientific value and that their creation was merely a "marketing exercise designed to draw attention to the (Korean) team's work."
That is not totally accurate, however. Writing in the January 17th edition of Munchen's Focus, Stefanie Reiffert points out that the use of fluorescent proteins as markers for genetic changes within cells has been standard practice in molecular biology for more than a decade. (See "Warum Schweine leuchten.")
For instance, back in 2003 researchers at the Institut fur Molekulare Tierzucht und Haustiergenetik at Ludwig Maximilians Universitat in Munchen inserted a green fluorescent protein known as GFP into pigs for that very purpose. "Es ist einfach nachzuweisen. Wir konnten durch die Betrachtung der Gewebe schnell feststellen, ob das Gen aktiv war," the institute's Eckhard Wolf told Focus.
Oliver Griesbeck of the Max Planck Institut fur Neurobiologie in Martinsried, Bayern also points out that fluorescent proteins enable researchers to study changes in both nerve cells and the signaling pathways of cells.
Green fluorescent proteins are derived from jellyfish whereas red ones come from sea anemones and corals. Not only are red dyes easier to spot in various tissues and organs, but researchers like to work with a rainbow of colors. "Es hilft naturlich, mehrere Farben zu haben, wenn man verschiedene Zelltypen markieren will," Griesbeck told Focus in the article cited supra.
The phosphorescing of animals gained momentum following the pioneering work of Ludwig Maximilians Universitat and in 2006 researchers in Taiwan also created green pigs. Not about to be outdone, their rivals on the mainland quickly followed suit with their own fluorescent pigs in December of the same year.
Early last month, Chinese scientists announced that one of their transgenic pigs had given birth to two fluorescent piglets after she was mated with an ordinary pig. (See photo above.) Since fluorescent genes are difficult to pass down, the sow's nine other offspring do not glow in the dark.
"The mouths, trotters, and tongues of the two piglets glow green under ultraviolet light, which indicates the technology to breed transgenic pigs via cell nuclear transfer is mature," Professor Liu Zhonghua of Northeast Agricultural University in Harbin told Reuters on January 8th. (See "China Rings Out Year of Fluorescent Green Pigs.")
This is another horrible development for pigs. Already subjected to a million horrors and abuses on factory farms, this research will lead to even more of these highly intelligent animals being raised and slaughtered for xenotransplantation. "This technology promises to breed excellent transgenic pigs and even raise special pigs to provide organs for human transplant operations in the future," Liu added.
Like cloned mammals, transgenic animals are certainly nothing new. For example, pigs previously have been genetically modified to reduce the amount of excrement that they produce. Cows have been genetically altered to protect them from inflammation in their udders and research is also ongoing to genetically reduce both the amount of excrement and methane gas that they produce.
In Canada, salmon have been genetically modified so as to make them grow faster. Goats are being genetically modified so as to produce in their milk, inter alia, blood clotting proteins for hemophiliacs and vaccines to counteract the deadly toxins used in biological and chemical warfare. Monkeys are likewise being injected with anthrax in an effort to develop antibodies for that disease. (See Washington Post, January 14, 2008, "Trying to Get Ahead of the Herd.")
These are only a few of the thousands of inhumanities that scientists, capitalists, and militarists have in store for the animals of this world. In man's quest for dominion over all of nature, nothing is sacred anymore.
Despite the rather obvious destruction of the planet that is now occurring, the hoi polloi stubbornly remain fervent believers in the benevolence of both science and capitalism. This is true even as an ever increasing number of them can no longer afford either adequate food, housing, or medical care, let alone even to protect their privacy and basic civil rights.
Plus, the air is filthy, the water polluted, and the food supply for both humans and animals has become contaminated. (See BBC, January 19, 2008, "Medicinal Plants Facing Threat" and January 14, 2008 press release from Physicians for a National Health Program entitled "Doctors Give Massachusetts Health Reform a Failing Grade -- Poor Early Outcomes Raise Red Flags. Only Private Insurers Profit.")
Photos: Gyeongsang National University (Angoras and glow cat) and China Daily (fluorescent pigs).