A "good enough" mom muses about alpha moms, adoption, computers, the State Of The World, Internet quirkiness, and the Kosmik All
Hey! No hay fever!

Spacemom kindly passed on this NYTimes article to me.

Allerca, a biotech company in California, announced in 2004 that it was going to try to develop a hypoallergenic cat via direct genetic modification; they were going to try to edit out the feline gene that fills cat saliva with a protein that causes cat allergies.

Lo and behold, while they were doing testing, they discovered that there was a certain population of cats who had a modified version of that gene--and their saliva/glands didn't produce the Dread Allergy Protein.

They have a sekrit location where they have stashed all the cats they have tested for this modified gene.  They are breeding the cats like...well...rabbits.  They plan to sell these hypoallergenic cats for (gasp!) $4,000 each.

My first response to the price was the aforementioned "GASP!", but then I read on and found out that people with severe allergies can pay up to $4,000 to $6,000 per year on shots to keep their allergies under control.  (Yes, you can just not keep cats, too.  But, hey, some of us are cat lovers, y'know?)

The cats go on sale next year.

In other allergy news, MSNBC reports that a series of six shots may suspend hay fever for years.  Not ready for primetime yet, but still...

I myself have certain allergies, mostly to dust and mites and particular pollens (like pine tree pollen, and the pollen of one of many golden flowers that blooms here in the autumn [I don't know which one]).  And I know that certain cats must have duplicate Dread Allergy Protein Genes, because of my tale of Charlie, my parents' beloved (and loving) cat, who drooled copiously and toxically.  I get regular sinus infections, and suspect my bad housekeeping habits (in other words, if I'm allergic to dust...um...maybe I should vacuum more often??).  But my travails with allergies pale beside those of others.

I toss these articles out as a beacon of hope for you.

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posted by Kate @ 10/10/2006 06:39:00 PM  
  • At 10/10/2006 08:19:00 PM, Anonymous I Gallop On said…

    Hi OmegaMom,

    I'd love to have the secret to a no-allergy life. My little girl really suffers from allergies. We suspect it may be one of our 30+ farm animals ... ;-)

    pax. Kimberly

  • At 10/11/2006 07:17:00 AM, Blogger Space Mom said…

    I would LOVE to have cats. Right now, we have 4 in the house. My calico (bought on Long Island), Soleil's gray tabby (also from Long Island), Luna's tiger (from Build a Bear) and my white soft fluffy (my sister bought me, a GUND).

    Yes, all stuffed animals since I can't breathe around cats... I am seriously considering the shots so the girls can have a cat. How screwed up is that?

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About Me
Name: OmegaMom
Home: Southwest
About Me: Middle-aged mom of a 4-year-old adopted from China. Love science, debate, good SF and fantasy, hiking, music of almost every style. Lousy housekeeper. "Good enough" mom.
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