December 21, 2023 at 1:26 pm

Scientist Created A Glowing Monkey That Could Help Us Understand Neurodegenerative Diseases

by Trisha Leigh

I know that people like to joke about how science experiments gone wrong are probably going to end the entire world (if megalomaniacs don’t beat them to it), but glowing monkeys?

That definitely seems to fit the bill, at least as a precursor to disaster.

The monkey is a unique “chimera” that has more than two sets of DNA – each from a genetically distinct long-tailed macaque embryo.


The researchers detailed its appearance in their published study, and provided proof of its glowing green face, fingertips, and fluorescent green eyes.

The baby monkey was euthanized after being studied for 10 days, due to birth defects that made it incompatible with life.

The goal of the project was to study embryonic development and examine disease progression in living tissue. Mice and rats are not similar enough to humans, genetically, to make them viable options.

Monkeys, though, are a different story, researchers say.

“Mice don’t reproduce many aspects of human disease for their physiology being too different from ours. In contrast, human and monkey are close evolutionary, so human diseases can be more faithfully modeled in monkeys.”


For this particular study, a group of female macaques were impregnated with the chimeric embryo. 12 of them fell pregnant, 6 gave birth, and this 1 was born alive.

That live birth is a huge success for genetic modification research. The fact that the donor embryo DNA showed up in 21 to 92% of body tissue represents a huge leap from previous attempts.

The scientists involved believe this means monkeys like this one could be useful in studying neurodegenerative diseases.

Also, they made it green on purpose, adding a fluorescent protein to the donor cells.

This was to make the DNA easier to track as it disseminated.


It’s a landmark trial, but let’s hope not a landmark on the road to human destruction.

Only time will tell.

If you think that’s impressive, check out this story about a “goldmine” of lithium that was found in the U.S. that could completely change the EV battery game.