Seeing Red

 |  Apr 29th 2009  |   13 Contributions


In Seoul, South Korea there are four cloned Beagle pups that glow red. Scientists have created the world's first transgenic dogs carrying fluorescent genes.

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) - South Korean scientists say they have engineered four beagles that glow red using cloning techniques that could help develop cures for human diseases. The four dogs, all named "Ruppy" - a combination of the words "ruby" and "puppy" - look like typical beagles by daylight.

But they glow red under ultraviolet light, and the dogs' nails and abdomens, which have thin skins, look red even to the naked eye.

"What's significant in this work is not the dogs expressing red colors but that we planted genes into them," Lee told The Associated Press on Tuesday.

The glowing dogs show that it is possible to successfully insert genes with a specific trait, which could lead to implanting other, non-fluorescent genes that could help treat specific diseases, Lee said.

The scientist said his team has started to implant human disease-related genes in the course of dog cloning, saying that will help them find new treatments for genetic diseases such as Parkinson's. He refused to provide further details, saying the research was still under way.

Two for the six puppies died, you have to wonder if it was due to natural causes or the experimentation. I hope these dogs aren't hurt by the implanted genes.

Is it just me, or does anyone else think this feels a little Pet Sematary-ish ?

*AP Photo/ Seoul National University, HO

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