It may look more like a case of photoshop manipulation, but the only thing that's been modified in these incredible images of glow-in-the-dark kittens were the genes used to create them.
The Daily Mail reports that researchers at the Mayo Clinic,"used harmless viruses to transfer genes into eggs removed from pet cats during routine spaying. One gene makes a fluorescent protein, the other produces a protein that fights off feline immunodeficiency virus, or FIV, the cat version of HIV. The eggs were then fertilized through IVF and implanted in surrogate mothers."
The kittens' day glo coloring, which can only be seen in the dark, was achieved by injecting jellyfish genes into the eggs, and used to show evidence that the genetic tinkering was successful. In addition to their glowing green aura, the three kittens born from the experiment were also shown to be better at resisting infection with FIV than normal cats.
This new research could potentially help lead to a cure for human AIDS (and possibly nighttime tripping, too), and may also be critical in creating a vaccine against FIV, a chronic disease in domestic cats that suppresses their immune system, greatly reducing their ability to fight infections due to a lowered white blood cell count. The disease can be transmitted to other cats through deep bite wounds, however cannot be passed on to humans, or other species of animals. While incurable, and often seen as a death sentence to cats in public shelters, the symptoms of FIV can be managed, and cats with the virus can still go on to live long, healthy lives.