View Full Version : World's first hypoallergenic cats go on sale

25-09-06, 01:43

The world's first specially-bred hypoallergenic cats have gone on sale in the United States.

US biotech firm Allerca says it has managed to selectively breed them by reducing a certain type of protein that triggers allergic reactions. The cats will not cause the red eyes, sneezing and even asthma that some cat allergy sufferers experience, except in the most acute cases. Despite costing $3,950 (2,104), there is already a waiting list to get one. Allerca first started taking orders for genetically engineered hypoallergenic cats back in 2004.

No genetic modification

It tested huge numbers of cats trying to find the tiny fraction which do not carry the glycoprotein Fel d1 - contained in its saliva, fur and skin - which produces allergies. Those cats were then used to breed the hypoallergenic cats. The company's Steve May told the BBC that it is a natural, if time consuming method. "This is a natural gene divergence within the cat DNA - one out of 50,000 cats will have this natural divergence," he said. "So candidates, natural divergent cats were found and then bred so there is really no modification of the gene."

Full story bbc.co.uk (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/5375900.stm)

tlr online
25-09-06, 01:47

Whatever next.

25-09-06, 01:51
This is an impressive example of selective breeding :) The price is a bit prohibitive though, it looks like only serious (and rich) feline enthusiasts need apply at the moment. I wonder how they handle the genetic diversity of the cats too - perhaps they might develop the same sort of health problems that you see in pedigree dog breeds?

25-09-06, 01:51
that's probably the weirdest thing I've ever heard.

25-09-06, 02:00
This probably falls into the more money than sense category but hey, where there's a need...

25-09-06, 02:02

Whatever next.Hypoallergenic dogs I should imagine. :D

25-09-06, 11:57
OMG,(the one on the right looks like a Hamster) :D

25-09-06, 12:06
I can imagine to a boy of 2 years, confused and unstable, making one Lego (DNA) of several million pieces... :rolleyes:

25-09-06, 12:18
They may be onto something :tmb: (drugs perhaps?).

25-09-06, 12:20
Gimme one of those kitties :jmp:

25-09-06, 13:06
:S i reckon they look weird :S

25-09-06, 16:13
(if I heard it right) ..those kitties has a little in-built tracking/scan chips O.o

25-09-06, 16:14
Hmmm although a cat whcih doesn't cause the owner to have allergies is great, i thought that was a risk that came with the animals.

25-09-06, 17:03
Surely any cat can be made allegy-free by shaving them......:pi:

Lol, I know it doesn't work like that but I think it's a clever idea - and if I was a cat-lover but suffered serious allegies I would be very happy about this news (my bank balance wouldn't be though).

25-09-06, 17:12
Sweet :) It's not really different from breeding other cat types, such as Siamese or Abyssinian. Though I can't really imagine "Hypoallergenic" as a category at cat shows :D

25-09-06, 17:14
Sweet :) It's not really different from breeding other cat types, such as Siamese or Abyssinian. Though I can't really imagine "Hypoallergenic" as a category at cat shows :D

Hmmm, maybe they'll be able to breed an aloe-vera cat next......

25-09-06, 17:44
Awww, they're cute! But really, what next?! :eek:

Mona Sax
25-09-06, 18:06
As long as it's just selective breeding and not genetic manipulation, I don't mind - there's really no difference to pedigree cats. Certainly nice for allergic cat-lovers (or people who wanted cats but couldn't have any because one of their relatives is allergic).

25-09-06, 19:29
The high price now must reflect the development costs. That is, they need to get back the cost of all those generations of cats they bred to get here. If this breed sells enough to keep going, the price should drop toward the cost of any other pure-bred cat.

25-09-06, 20:03
One wonders what they did with the 'unsuitable' offspring.

25-09-06, 20:05
One wonders what they did with the 'unsuitable' offspring.

Well, I for one hope they found them good homes :).

25-09-06, 21:28
Well, I for one hope they found them good homes :).

i doubt it :(