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Science & Technology

Russia sets up mammoth cloning laboratory

By T.K. Randall
September 2, 2015 · Comment icon 26 comments

Could a live mammoth soon walk the Earth again ? Image Credit: CC BY-SA 2.0 Flying Puffin
Scientists in Siberia have set up a lab dedicated to the goal of cloning a mammoth from ancient DNA.
Situated in Yakutsk, the world's coldest city, the new laboratory will focus on locating live cells within the preserved remains of prehistoric beasts with the intention of creating cloned animals.

The main emphasis will be on bringing back the woolly mammoth, a large prehistoric relative of the modern elephant that is believed to have gone extinct somewhere around 10,000 years ago.

Both the Beijing Institute of Genomics and South Korea's Sooam Biotech company, which has made significant advancements in the field of dog cloning, will also be involved in the research.
"In order to clone a mammoth, three parties signed an agreement on cooperation that could make our dream come true," said Semyon Grigorev, director of the Mammoth Museum in Yakutsk.

The task is certainly a challenging one, especially given that so little viable DNA has ever been recovered from mammoth remains and nothing like this has ever been done before.

The team however remains optimistic that cloning a mammoth is something that can be done - especially if a perfectly preserved specimen can be found within the next few years.

If they succeed it will be one of the most significant scientific accomplishments in history.

Source: BBC News | Comments (26)




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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #17 Posted by Professor Buzzkill 9 years ago
A man moth? I might drop by if I was in the area
Comment icon #18 Posted by Paranomali 9 years ago
Seems like kind of a random task to focus on achieving...
Comment icon #19 Posted by Goodnite 9 years ago
I caution this may be Pandorra's Box.
Comment icon #20 Posted by lightly 9 years ago
Seems like kind of a random task to focus on achieving... maybe it's just because frozen Mammoth's ,hopefully including viable DNA? turn up from time to time? We don't seem to hear about the frozen mouse find? ;o)
Comment icon #21 Posted by Aus Der Box Skeptisch 9 years ago
On this note I take it they have found a cure for cancer? Ebola is now a thing of the past? And God has resigned and handed over the post to this lot? Not every scientist has the know how or where-with-all to create cures... some scientists do not work with cells and dna at all. Apples to oranges by comparison. So while we would love those things first it simply can not be up to every scientist to race to your cures... other fields of study need attention also.
Comment icon #22 Posted by Aus Der Box Skeptisch 9 years ago
Science is not monolithic, there are many facilities working on cancer and they would be glad for our donations and support. As for Ebola, I saw they they have developed a vaccine that apparently is 100% effective against the disease, presumably they will be mass producing it at some point to stop the disease from spreading when it breaks out, at least that is their plan as I understand it. Early humans may have played a role in the extinction of the Mammoth. I see it as an opportunity to restore an ecosystem that is missing one of its key components. I realize that may be decades or centuries... [More]
Comment icon #23 Posted by freetoroam 9 years ago
Not every scientist has the know how or where-with-all to create cures... some scientists do not work with cells and dna at all. Apples to oranges by comparison. So while we would love those things first it simply can not be up to every scientist to race to your cures... other fields of study need attention also. What a scientist trying to clone a mammoth not need to know about cells and DNA?
Comment icon #24 Posted by Aus Der Box Skeptisch 9 years ago
What a scientist trying to clone a mammoth not need to know about cells and DNA? Of course. I was expanding on the generalization. so often when people hear of scientific research they wonder why their their own prioritized research isn't being done.
Comment icon #25 Posted by IceBorne 9 years ago
Jurassic World showed me how dangerous is it play with DNA. XD But seriously: it would be cool seeing a true living Mammoth. But I don`t think it will happen too soon. At least the laboratory is beginning. I am just wonderin if Putin takes it also serious or just showing us pumped up Russian balls.
Comment icon #26 Posted by DieChecker 9 years ago
To get a cool, valuable, marketable pelt from the mammoths, I propose they hybrid them with Siberian tigers.... What could go wrong?


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