Scientists Create Mice With No Fear Of Cats

MiceIt’s the eternal battle: cat versus mouse. But now, Japanese scientists have created genetically altered mice that do not have an innate fear of cats.

The altered mice sniffed and played with cats instead of running away from them.

Tokyo University professor Ko Kobayakawa created these mice by shutting down receptors in their olfactory bulb, the area of the brain that processes information about smells. Typically, these receptors induce panic and fear once the mice smell a cat.

Kobayakawa said, “Mice fear cats because they are innately conditioned to fear when sensing the odor of the predators. So by getting rid of the specific receptors for sensing the odor, mice never feel afraid of cats.”

He added, “So by applying this theory to other mammals, we will probably be able to make other animals that are not afraid of their natural enemies.”

Although the researchers said the altered mice did freeze in fear whenever a cat meowed.

Source: Guardian Unlimited

18 Responses to “Scientists Create Mice With No Fear Of Cats”

  1. Poodlluver says:

    And the point/reason for doing this is….?

  2. Cathy says:

    The purpose of this is what? Idiots

  3. Donna says:

    Scientist have the abilty to create “good”. In stead they waste knowledge creating the needless act of creating mice that are not afraid of cats ? What value is this scientific “discovery ? Why not research a way to stop animal overpopulation with out causing harm to the animals or ways to prevent suffering ? What a wasteful discovery.

  4. blkcatgal says:

    One question….why???? I really don’t see the point to this.

  5. highnote says:

    I do not understand the purpose in this at all. So I buy a cat to rid my house of mice but now they will just get along with them? When they start changing a natural born instinct of an animal then they are truly messing with the laws of nature.
    Seems to me there are too many important things to be looking into instead of this. Like finding cures for disease.
    What a big waste of time and money.
    Cats and mice become friends! What next? Some things should not be messed with because we never know what may come out of it.

  6. Michelle says:

    Ok that is really retarded. Great that the mouse is all big and bad, and no longer afraid of acts and all, but what difference does it make? If the cat wants to eat the mouse, she’s still going to eat the mouse! I just find this pointless. Even if this experiment is done to other animals, and they are no longer afraid of bigger animals that may eat them, how will this prevent that big animal from eating them in the first place? Idiots.

  7. NH says:

    Oh wonderful. I already have mice issues. Just what I need…more mice…and ones who aren’t afraid of cats. Just wonderful.

  8. Amanda says:

    (The researchers found that fear in mammals, including humans, is genetically inherited and triggered by certain smells ‘ prewired’ into our systems as danger signs.

    “The discovery that fear is genetically determined and not learned goes against what was previously thought.”

    Reporting their findings in Nature magazine, they say it could help us understand how the brain processes information)

  9. catmom5 says:

    Sorry, but I don’t buy it! There is no reason to mess with the way these animals were created ~ and created that way for a reason ~ SURVIVAL!! Too bad that so many scientists/researchers get away with this unnecessary and, sometimes, evil research. Seems like they can justify most anything anymore.

  10. straybaby says:

    “The discovery that fear is genetically determined and not learned goes against what was previously thought.”

    i think if they look a tad deeper they will find it’s both.

  11. JJ says:

    So instead of giving off ‘fear scents’ these mouse will now pal around with the cats and in turn multiply in even greater numbers creating a population explosion that will invade all the grain houses, storage facilities, etc. let alone your own homes and business looking for food? FRANKEN SCIENCE creating franken creatures to go along with all the FRANKEN FOOD! These people have too much time on their hands and waaaaaaayy too much money. Think of all the good that could be done with all the money and time these FRANKEN SCIENTISTS are wasting.

  12. toni says:


  13. The Lioness says:

    More gene games. LOVELY.

    ~The Lioness

  14. Velvet's Dad says:

    I agree with all the above. A cat will still prey on a mouse. So, this just gives makes it easy for the cat to stalk and kill the mouse? The only “good” I can see from this is that, if this were all true, the rodent population might eventually be wiped out. However, given the further domestication of the cat, that’s not very likely. So, what is the point?

  15. ryssee says:

    Hello? Um… where is our cure for cancer?

  16. Don Earl says:

    It’s interesting sometimes to look at the “report cards” for our public school system. The US has the worst scores in math and science in the developed world, and is poor compared to many third world countries. The rest of the scores aren’t so hot either, including reading comprehension.

    “Who cares about fruit flies?”, they said to Darwin. (Or, maybe they wouldn’t, not having a fuzzy clue who Darwin was or the subject of his early research.)

    It’s a great big world out there folks. You learn new things by trying new things.

  17. KAEfamily says:

    Mice will no longer be afraid of cats BUT our 11 lbs mutt will run for the cover if confronted by a fearless New York City sized RAT!

  18. shibadiva says:

    Not only that, but this research is nothing new! Psychological studies have already been done on rats to investigate the fear response. Yes, what’s the point, especially since research information was already available?

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