Many people have asked us why we want to sequence Lil Bub? To satisfy our scientific ego? Because we can? Well, curiosity is part of it, but there’s much more! First and foremost, because we think it can help pets and humans with traits similar to Lil Bub if we can find the genetic cause(s) of Lil Bub’s special looks. It could help diagnosis and also guide treatment(s).
Lil Bub’s osteopetrosis
Lil Bub has a very rare bone disorder, which has been diagnosed as osteopetrosis. It means that her bones become more dense with age, and when she was about one year old, this bone disease was so painful that she could barely move. Luckily Mike, her owner, was very persistent, and with the advice of fans and specialists, they found a treatment that worked for Lil Bub. It’s called Pulsed Electromagnetic Field Therapy. This is a video about Lil Bub’s miraculous recovery:
Does this mean that her therapy is a good treatment for other cats with osteopetrosis? Does this mean that people with osteopetrosis should also be treated with radiotherapy? Is cat osteopetrosis the same as human osteopetrosis? Currently, the answer is – we don’t know. But if you know what causes the osteopetrosis you can start answering these questions. Continue reading