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A View from David Appell

Genetically Engineered Cats

The GM pet industry continues apace–a California-based company has started taking orders for genetically modified cats, altered to ease the sufferings of humans who have pet allergies.Allerca is selling the cats for $3,500 each, to be delivered starting in 2007….

  • October 27, 2004

The GM pet industry continues apace–a California-based company has started taking orders for genetically modified cats, altered to ease the sufferings of humans who have pet allergies.

Allerca is selling the cats for $3,500 each, to be delivered starting in 2007. Up to 10 percent of the U.S. population has allergies to cats, and according to CNN, cat allergen is also one of the main causes of childhood allergies, asthma, and other respiratory diseases such as bronchitis. Allerca suppresses production of a protein secreted by the cat’s skin and salivary glands that cause cat allergies.

I expect little uproar about these cats, just as there was little long-lasting concern about GloFish, which have gone on sale in pet stores earlier this year–a zebra fish implanted with a fluorescent sea anemone gene. Americans have shown little to no compunction about accepting genetically modified food or genetically modified animals–why start now?

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