Instagram | @gataquimera

Meet Quimera, A Cat With Two Faces Who Is Absolutely Stunning

You've probably heard of chimeras before. They are a staple of the fantasy genre, but they do exist in real life — if a little less dramatically than a riddle-posing Sphinx.

Basically, a chimera is a single individual made up of the cells of two individuals, usually due to embryos merging. Genetically, chimeras are very rare, but among animals the term is also associated with individuals that display two very different color variations in one animal.

This cat was named Quimera for obvious reasons.

Instagram | @gataquimera

Quimera has gained a huge social media following thanks to her particularly dramatic two-faced look.

What's even more amazing is that the color split continues along her body, except that the colors are reversed. Neat!

There is some debate over whether or not cats like her are true example of chimeras.

Virginia Papaioannou, Columbia University Professor of Genetics and Development, told PEOPLE it's unlikely that such felines literally have two sets of cells. Rather, they are "mosaics":

"In a mosaic, there’s only one individual and it just happens to have different genetic components active in its cells. A chimera would be a much more unusual and unlikely event."

Papaioannou believes that cats like Quimera are simply calicos with a very striking pattern.

Instagram | @gataquimera

But I'm sure Quimera doesn't mind. Being called a "mosaic" is also quite special.

Either way, she's a beautiful kitty.

Quimera has recently welcomed a sister into her home too.

Instagram | @gataquimera

Kyra's patterns are quite as symmetrical as Quimera's, but they are no less beautiful.

If you want to join her almost 100k followers, you can do so on Instagram @qataquimera. Kyra has her own account too: @kyra.gata.quimera.

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