Alba, the glowing rabbit that made headlines two years ago for being, well, a glowing rabbit, has met an untimely death, according to the French researcher who genetically engineered her. [...]
Houdebine and his director were opposed to the now-famous, brilliantly glowing photograph of Alba. They and other researchers say the rabbit doesn't actually glow so brightly and uniformly.
"Kac fabricated data for his personal use," Houdebine said. "This is why we totally stopped any contact with him."
"The scientific fact is that the rabbit is not green," he said. "He should have never published that. This was very disagreeable for me."
The eyes and ears of the rabbit are green under ultraviolet light, Houdebine said, but the fur does not glow, because it's dead tissue that doesn't express the gene. Only if the rabbit were shaved would the body glow, he said. [...]
"It's almost impossible to duplicate," he said. "Photographs always do lie in some way or another whether you intend to or not."
"Art misrepresents reality all the time -- and he's an artist, not a scientist," said Stuart Newman, a member of the Council for Responsible Genetics and a cell biologist at New York Medical College, "but I think people are beholden to tell the truth."
R.I.P. Alba, the Glowing Bunny
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