Chimeras are monsters made by splicing together DNA from other people and animals. Mad scientists try to create new hybrid organisms with the best parts of each animal. In many cases, these are rogue experiments that go wrong and lead to deaths. Get more after the jump.
Mixing DNA To Make Chimeras
When scientists try to create chimeras, they start with the closest ‘relatives’ in the animal kingdom. That’s because these animals (including humans) share as much as 99% of human DNA. Having similar DNA sequences makes it easier to combine and make a viable prototype (early version).
For humans, chimps and bonobos have the most similar DNA sequences. Theoretically, they make ideal candidates for genetic splicing, but the result wouldn’t be groundbreaking. Primates and humans would result in a hairier person with more agility and strength. That’s boring in the mad science world.
The more interesting application involves splicing across the animal kingdom. That means taking mammal DNA (like a chimp) and combining it with a bird, fish, lizard or insect. You could end up with the winged monkeys from The Wizard of Oz. Now, THAT makes a more monstrous chimera!
Why Not Combine Creature Parts?
A creature with combined parts is called a simulacrum, like Frankenstein’s monster. These combination monsters also have high rates of failure. That’s because the host body rejects the other parts like organ rejection in medical science. A chimera uses DNA, so the creature won’t reject the different elements because it was ‘born’ with them.
What Mad Scientists Look For When Splicing DNA
Under a powerful microscope, the mad scientist tries to find the sequences they want to replicate. For example, the scientist wants to create a super soldier with a wolf’s ability to track by scent. They would pull up the wolf’s DNA sequence for its nose. Then, they’d look for the string of genes that enables smell. After that, the scientist would splice (or cut out and combine) with the soldier’s smell sequence.
If it takes, then the soldier may have an enhanced ability to track the enemy like a wolf tracks prey.
However, over 99% of experiments result in failure. These can hurt or kill the test subject, which is why chimeras are made in a production plant-like lab.
Scaled Monster Production
Scale means massive testing and experimenting. This isn’t one or two human cell globs infused with animal DNA. It means thousands of test tubes and dozens of incubation tanks going at the same time.
Once they get something that survives the first few days, the scientist will extract the cells from a petri dish and move them into one of the test tubes. As it grows, the prototype will move to an incubation tank where it will grow to a full monster in a few months. The scientists will infuse the tank with the best biochemicals to accelerate the chimera’s growth.
While it develops, the scientists will observe the growing chimera to make sure it develops the parts the scientists wanted.
If the chimera doesn’t, then they will euthanize (or kill) it in the tank and start over.
You can understand how this complicates things when mad scientists use humans as prototypes. It probably won’t end well for that test subject.
Chimeras As Weapons
Chimera creation costs a lot of money, so the military pays for most of it. That’s because it wants the most lethal soldiers. You can imagine the benefits of a Marine, who can breathe under water (amphibian), generate an electric shock (eel), and deflect gun fire off its skin (tortoise). That’s one beach landing force you don’t want to fight.
That means scientists need recruits for these experiments. They’d either have to take cells from the participants or use military personnel to see what happens. In general, the military scientists would use the cells because they don’t have parents and family to worry about. They may be mad, but they’re not insane.
Chimera Laboratories For The Military
You can find these labs in the most remote parts of the country. They’d be in Nevada’s deserts (think Area 51), underneath mountains in the Rockies (like NORAD), underwater (Lake Superior is the deepest lake in the US) or the Alaskan Arctic. It would be difficult for enemy nations to locate these labs and then penetrate them.
What To Do If You Meet A Chimera
It doesn’t happen often, but sometimes a chimera gets out. Unfortunately, that means a backpacker or kayaker ends up dead.
While most chimeras have a human genome base, they still have animal DNA in them. Sometimes, the animal’s instinct overwhelms the human side with deadly results. Other chimeras are made with the most dangerous predators’ DNA. You never know what you get with chimeras.
The best thing you can do is stick to civilization. Don’t stray too far from the hiking trail. Stick closer to shore when you kayak. Don’t go camping in the most remote parts of the forest. Make sure you have GPS, gas and a cellular connection in the desert. In other words, be ready to skidaddle!
Once mad scientists release a chimera for a trial run, they don’t care who gets in the way. You’re just another test for their chimera experiment.