News24

Chance seen to clone mammoth

2011-12-03 20:49

Tokyo - Scientists from Japan and Russia believe it may be possible to clone a mammoth after finding well-preserved bone marrow in a thigh bone recovered from permafrost soil in Siberia, a report said on Saturday.

Teams from the Sakha Republic's mammoth museum and Japan's Kinki University will launch fully-fledged joint research next year aiming to recreate the giant mammal, Japan's Kyodo News reported from Yakutsk, Russia.

By replacing the nuclei of egg cells from an elephant with those taken from the mammoth's marrow cells, embryos with mammoth DNA can be produced, Kyodo said, citing the researchers.

The scientists will then plant the embryos into elephant wombs for delivery, as the two species are close relatives, the report said.

Securing nuclei with an undamaged gene is essential for the nucleus transplantation technique, it said.

For scientists involved in the research since the late 1990s, finding nuclei with undamaged mammoth genes has been a challenge. Mammoths became extinct about 10 000 years ago.

But the discovery in August of the well-preserved thigh bone in Siberia has increased the chances of a successful cloning.

Global warming has thawed ground in eastern Russia that is usually almost permanently frozen, leading to the discoveries of a number of frozen mammoths, the report said.

Comments
  • africanwolf - 2011-12-03 21:32

    Is there anything about mammoths in the bible? after they clone the mammoth, they must clone a pappoth too for the mammoth not to get bored :) LOL

  • Silvana - 2011-12-04 07:25

    From a purely scientific point of view this is ground breaking stuff, but from a practical and humanitarian aspect, absolutely idiotic. Where are these animals going to be kept. What impact will it they have on the other animals natural habitat, which is shrinking at an alarming rate. Are they going to be kept in zoos as a novelty. Are they going to be bred to harvest their tusks? This is going to lead to other experiments. Jurassic Park??????????????

      mike.clery - 2011-12-04 08:11

      A sane voice between all the "thumbs down". Maybe people don't understand that this won't help Manny find his family.

  • Peter - 2011-12-04 07:44

    Wonderful news! I believe that, as man was at least partly responsible for the demise of the Mammoth, then we should bring these magnificent animals back if we can possibly do so.

  • Dolf - 2011-12-04 12:04

    There is a damn reason why the animals died outmwhy does man want to meddle in God's plan?? Rather spend that research money on preserving the rhinos's or something!!

      jody.beggs - 2011-12-05 10:36

      @Dolf. Really God's plan , What is that , crime , corruption , rape , death. Gotto love God botherer's. According to most Christians , mammoths never existed because they are older than 6000 years old . God has no place in Science and should only be used by Sheeple with no intention of finding out the truth ! Damn the Man , save the Mammoth.

      Victor - 2011-12-05 14:12

      Dolf: Does god's plan include all the aids deaths, black plague, worms that burrow into an eye to lay eggs, etc?

  • Enlightened - 2011-12-04 21:00

    Africanwolf, no, I don't think there will be much n mamoths in the bible. They died out long before the bible was invented and god revealed himslef. Just sometimes feel sorry for all those poor soles that lived and died before the christian era. God had as mentioned, not revealed himself to these creatures, Cro Magnon, Australopithecus, Homo Erectus, neanderthal, all died out long before the bible was aroundso, I am afraid the answer to your question will be no, From a scientific perspective, this is brilliant news though.

      gertvr - 2011-12-05 02:02

      Firtsly the bible wasn't invented, it's a well documented book of actual events, proven to be fact many times over, although you might want to choose to ignore it. Secondly God never had to reveal himself to animals, because it is the humans that he chose to have a personal relationship with. The Dinosaurs and mammoths along with them died in the ice age (3rd Epoch) when earth was hit by a massive meteor and spun it around it's own axis. Christian or not this has aslso been proven many times. The location of the impact was where yellow stone national park is today and held earth in Darkness for a number of years. Read some more books before you make idiotic comments.

      Victor - 2011-12-05 14:14

      gert: Actual events? For which there is no evidence? Like the slavery of the jews in Egypt, or Noah's ark or jesus' ressurrection? The parting of the red sea? All the miracles? "when earth was hit by a massive meteor and spun it around it's own axis" That comment makes no sense. Surely it was the huge fireball and climate change that followed all the ash and debris that killed the dinosaurs?

  • Thomas - 2011-12-05 02:48

    "usually almost permanently frozen" So, which is it? Usually, almost, or permanently?

  • pwcrook - 2011-12-05 13:49

    I'm pretty sure that the first mammoth would be quite isolated and monitored, but if it is feasible I don't see why these animals should not be reintroduced into their natural habitat (like Siberia or Alaska). These creatures became extinct roughly 10,000 years ago along with many other mega-fauna. Although climate change has been suggested as a cause for their extinction, there is strong evidence of the species surviving many warmer periods. Today the most popular theory is in fact that it was a combination between climate change and human hunting. I for one would love to see this animal re-introduced into the areas the should be inhabiting.

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