Frankenstein's Cat: Cuddling Up to Biotech's Brave New Beasts

Frankenstein's Cat: Cuddling Up to Biotech's Brave New Beasts

Emily Anthes


Winner of 2014 AAAS/Subaru SB&F Prize for most sensible younger grownup technology Book
Long-listed for the PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary technological know-how Writing Award
One of Nature's summer time e-book Picks
One of Publishers Weekly's best Ten Spring 2013 technological know-how Books

For centuries, we've got toyed with our creature partners, breeding canines that herd and hunt, housecats that appear like tigers, and teacup pigs that healthy snugly in our purses. yet what occurs after we take animal alteration a step additional, engineering a cat that glows eco-friendly below ultraviolet gentle or cloning the cherished family members Labrador? technology has given us a complete new toolbox for tinkering with existence. How are we utilizing it?

In Frankenstein's Cat, the journalist Emily Anthes takes us from petri dish to puppy shop as she explores how biotechnology is shaping the way forward for our bushy and feathered associates. As she ventures from bucolic barnyards to a "frozen zoo" the place scientists are storing DNA from the planet's so much unique creatures, she discovers how we will be able to use cloning to guard endangered species, craft prosthetics to avoid wasting injured animals, and hire genetic engineering to provide farms with disease-resistant cattle. alongside the best way, we meet a number of the animals which are ushering during this impressive age of enhancement, together with sensor-wearing seals, cyborg beetles, a bionic bulldog, and the world's first cloned cat.

Through her encounters with scientists, conservationists, ethicists, and marketers, Anthes finds that whereas a few of our interventions might be trivial (behold: the GloFish), others may possibly enhance the lives of many species-including our personal. So what does biotechnology really mean for the world's wild issues? And what do our courageous new beasts let us know approximately ourselves?

With willing perception and her trademark spunk, Anthes highlights either the peril and the promise of our medical superpowers, taking us on an event right into a international the place our grandest technological know-how fiction fantasies are quickly changing into reality.

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