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Chimeras: The genetics behind this amazing-looking ‘two-faced’ cat

| | December 1, 2017
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This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

Meet Quimera the cat—she’s no ordinary feline! You’ve probably never seen any animal quite like her. Her furry face is split down the middle between two totally different colors and she has two different-colored eyes as well.

So what’s behind Quimera’s two-faced look? She may be a chimera, a quirk of genetics that is exceedingly rare. As Columbia University Professor of Genetics and Development Virginia Papaioannou told the The New Republic: “A chimera … is a composite individual that was made up of cells from at least two different original embryos. If they fuse together early enough, they will become a single organism whose genetic input is from two completely different individuals. … A chimera would be a much more unusual and unlikely event.”

It’s unclear whether Quimera is a rare, true chimera, but she has gotten pretty famous for her mismatched face. The feline has 54,000 followers on Instagram, where she can be seen behaving like a lot of other cats.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: This ‘Two-Faced’ Cat Has An Awesome Genetic Quirk

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