241 pages, no illustrations
Fluorescent fish that glow near pollution. Dolphins with prosthetic fins. Robot-armoured beetles that military handlers can send on spy missions. Beloved pets resurrected from DNA. Scientists have already begun to create these high-tech hybrids, mostly to serve human whims and needs. What if a cow could be engineered to no longer feel pain – should we design a herd that would assuage our guilt over eating meat? Shouldn't we create it?
Popular science writer Emily Anthes travels around the globe to see how humans are inventing the fauna of the future, from the Roslin Institute, the Scottish birthplace of Dolly the Sheep, where scientists are trying to clone an endangered mountain lion to a 'pharm' where chickens are modified to lay eggs laced with cancer-fighting drugs. Frankenstein's Cat is an eye-opening exploration of weird science – and how we are playing god in the animal world.
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Emily Anthes is a science writer whose work has appeared in Discover, the Wall Street Journal, Scientific American, and many other publications. She is also the founder of the Wonderland blog, part of the Public Library of Science, one of the most prestigious and most read science research publishers in the world. This is her first book.