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Frankenstein's Cat

Cuddling Up to Biotech's Brave New Beasts by Emily Anthes

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3:02pm, May 16, 2013

Artemis may look like any other goat, but a little human DNA inserted into her genetic code gives her life-saving potential. This University of California, Davis wonder produces milk rich in the bacteria-busting enzyme lysozyme, a compound that could help prevent some of the hundreds of thousands of deaths from diarrhea worldwide each year.

“Science has given us a whole new toolbox for tinkering with life,” writes journalist Anthes. Frankenstein’s Cat shows off just a small sampling of this humanmade (or at least human-modified) menagerie. Some, like Artemis, are the result of genetic editing. Others are biomechanical: Anthes meets scientists who are wiring insects’ brains to steer them like remote-controlled cars and building a prosthetic tail for a wounded dolphin.

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