Are you a Mosaic or Chimera?

Posted: March 29, 2015 in Science and Technology, Writing
Tags: , , , , ,

First off, what is a Mosaic? Is there really such a thing?

Certainly.

Mosaics have different cell lines within their bodies. But they’re born from the same egg.

Chimeras also have different cell lines. But they come from separate eggs.

Typically, when two eggs in the womb get fertilized by two different sperm cells, they create fraternal twins. But rarely, though it does happen, as the eggs begin their development, they fuse.

The title “Chimera” is mythical being composed of more than one animal. A human Chimera is someone with two sets of DNA. I find this fascinating because Mosaics and Chimeras live amongst us.

I read this interesting article about Mrs. “McK”. A woman in Northern England who donated blood in 1953 and it was discovered she two different types of blood. It was the first documented case of a human chimera.

Mosaics and Chimeras are all around. Sometimes they have two different color eyes. Sometimes they have different patches of skin. Mostly, the outward changes are subtle. They just have complicated DNA.

This kind of color in our own selves can be a great way to add depth to a character.

It can also make for good crime scene confusion. DNA analysis can distinguish a Mosaic’s sample from others. But a Chimera could be confused with another family member – unless the DNA is taken from the suspects blood.

But I really enjoy learning about what makes us ‘us’. Mosaicism and Chimerism are just another component of the most complicated animal on earth. The next time you need a good or bad character with two different color eyes, make them a Mosaic or Chimera. They might just get away with murder.

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