Russians, Japanese want to clone Woolly Mammoth:

Total posts: [18]
1 TheBatPencil7th Dec 2011 09:52:46 PM from Glasgow, Scotland , Relationship Status: I'm just a hunk-a, hunk-a burnin' love
Mammoth science is the best science

Scientists from Russia and Japan are undertaking a Jurassic Park-style experiment in an effort to bring the woolly mammoth out of extinction.

The scientists claim that a thigh bone found in August contains remarkably well-preserved marrow cells, which could form the starting point of the experiment.

The team claim that the cloning could be complete within the next five years.

But others have cast doubt on whether such a thing is possible.

Mother cow?

The team, from the Siberian mammoth museum and Japan's Kinki University, said that they planned to extract a nucleus from the animal's bone marrow and insert it into the egg of an African elephant.

Similar procedures have been done before with mixed results.

In 2009 it was reported that the recently extinct Pyrenean ibex was brought back to life briefly using 10-year-old DNA from the animal's skin. The cloned ibex died within minutes of being born, due to breathing difficulties.

The Roslin Institute, famous for cloning Dolly the sheep, no longer conducts cloning work but has published some thoughts on the possibilities of bringing extinct species back to life.

It said it was extremely unlikely such an experiment would be successful, especially using an elephant surrogate.

"First, a suitable surrogate mother animal is required. For the mammoth this would need to be a cow (as best biological fit) but even here the size difference may preclude gestation to term," it said.

The success rate for such an experiment would be in the range of 1-5%, it said.

The second issue would be the need for viable whole cells.

"If there are intact cells in this tissue they have been 'stored' frozen. However, if we think back to what actually happened to the animal - it died, even if from the cold, the cells in the body would have taken some time to freeze. This time lag would allow for breakdown of the cells, which normally happens when any animal dies. Then the carcass would freeze. So it is unlikely that the cells would be viable," it said.

Assuming that viable cells are found it becomes a numbers game, it went on.

"Let's say that one in a thousand cells were nevertheless viable, practical issues come into play. Given that we have an efficiency of 1% cloning for livestock species and if only one in a thousand cells are viable then around 100,000 cells would need to be transferred," it said. Hybrid

Charles Foster, a fellow at Green Templeton College, Oxford, seemed more optimistic.

"The idea of mammoth cloning isn't completely ridiculous.

"How the resultant embryos would fare beyond the stage of a few cells is more or less unknown," he said.

While most of the genetic coding of the embryo would come from the mammoth, some would come from the elephant ovum.

"We really don't know what the contribution of that cytoplasmic material is, or how it would interact with 'alien' DNA," he said.

It would however mean that, even if successful, the clone would be a hybrid rather than a pure mammoth.

edited 7th Dec '11 9:53:14 PM by TheBatPencil

And let us pray that come it may
(As come it will for a' that)
2 ohsointocats7th Dec 2011 09:55:19 PM from The Sand Wastes , Relationship Status: Showing feelings of an almost human nature
And then what?
3 TheEarthSheep7th Dec 2011 09:56:03 PM from a Pasture hexagon
Christmas Sheep
Have a happy five years until any of this pans out, successful or no.
Still Sheepin'
4 AceofSpades7th Dec 2011 10:01:57 PM , Relationship Status: [TOP SECRET]
We could always let the mammoths loose on Mars. I think there was a sci-fi story about that somewhere once.
5 ohsointocats7th Dec 2011 10:08:54 PM from The Sand Wastes , Relationship Status: Showing feelings of an almost human nature
I mean you clone a mammoth, and then you have exactly one mammoth. And then the mammoth dies. This is kind of one of those For Science! things, isn't it.
7 johnnyfog7th Dec 2011 10:25:51 PM from the Zocalo , Relationship Status: They can't hide forever. We've got satellites.
Actual Wrestling Legend
[up] Ooh. Brainstorm. We can mix in some goat DNA, and end up with Wampas.
I'm a skeptical squirrel
8 Barkey7th Dec 2011 11:01:16 PM from Bunker 051 , Relationship Status: [TOP SECRET]
War Profiteer
I think this sounds cool, even if there's not a whole lot of productivity to cloning a mammoth, there's still practical applications for cloning in general, and this means we have a gateway to continue that research.
The AR-15 is responsible for 95% of all deaths each year. The rest of the deaths are from obesity and drone strikes.
Pro-Freedom Fanatic
Cool! Let's let'em.
You exist because we allow it and you will end because we demand it.
10 USAF7138th Dec 2011 04:35:52 AM from the United States
I changed accounts.
...depending on whether or not they won't just stab the poor thing to death and dissect it For Science!, I approve...

I mean, if they're not gonna treat it like shit, it's fine. I'm surprised Japan and Russia are working together, but...
I am now known as Flyboy.
11 Carciofus8th Dec 2011 04:49:11 AM from Alpha Tucanae I
Is that cake frosting?
Stabbing it to death would be a silly idea: you don't want to damage the organs more than you have to. Vivisection is far better here tongue.

But really, scientists would be far more interested in study the mammoth's growth and behaviour to kill it anytime soon.

I am, frankly, doubtful about the probability of success of the project; but I am not an expert in the discipline, and if they can succeed then major props to them.

edited 8th Dec '11 4:53:01 AM by Carciofus

But they seem to
know where they are going, the ones who walk away from Omelas.

scratching at .8, just hopin'
Start mammoth farms. Boom, major food source that can be raised in the Arctic regions, assuming their food needs can be met.

I can see why the Russians are interested. Shit, I'd try mammoth steaks.
13 Excelion8th Dec 2011 06:17:54 AM from The Fatherland
Most of the article is talking about how low the chances of success are, and you guys are already considering what they'd do if they manage to create a grown mammoth?

If anything, it will give them some insight in whatever.
If they don't manage to clone a mammoth in five years, maybe they'll just glue some hair on an elephant and call it a day.
15 HellmanSabian10th Dec 2011 07:50:10 PM from The United Kingdom , Relationship Status: Maxing my social links
-Insert Sarcastic Remark Here-
I say what's the point? Good luck with that.
"Free will is a myth. Religion is a joke. We are all pawns, controlled by something greater: Dank Memes. The DNA of the soul." - Monsoon.
16 Inhopelessguy10th Dec 2011 07:54:32 PM from Birmingham Ctl, UK , Relationship Status: Wanna dance with somebody

I want to see a a mammoth.
I feel annoying most of the time But I keep on talking just to keep my mind off you Just to keep my mind off you.

17 FFShinra10th Dec 2011 08:22:59 PM from Ivalice, apparently , Relationship Status: Too sexy for my shirt
Beware the Crazy Man.
Final Fantasy, Foreign Policy, and Bollywood. Helluva combo, that...
18 Inhopelessguy10th Dec 2011 08:31:36 PM from Birmingham Ctl, UK , Relationship Status: Wanna dance with somebody
It'd be a project of mammoth proportions!

I mean, who'd have elephunk'd it?

I feel annoying most of the time But I keep on talking just to keep my mind off you Just to keep my mind off you.

The system doesn't know you right now, so no post button for you.
You need to Get Known to get one of those.

Total posts: 18