As the woolly giants disappeared from the face of the earth thousands of years later, scientists have embarked on an ambitious project to return these animals to the Arctic tundra.
The possibility of recreating the giants and returning them to the wild has been discussed – sometimes seriously – for more than a decade, but on Monday researchers announced new funds that they believe could make their dream come true.
The hike was raised by Ben Lam, a technology and software entrepreneur and George Church, a professor of genetics at Harvard Medical School, with $ 15 million raised by the biological science and genetics company Colossus. …
The study shows that the woolly mammoth traveled long enough to orbit the earth twice
Scientists initially thought of creating a hybrid of elephant and mammoth, creating embryos in a laboratory that carries mammoth DNA. The starting point of the project is to take skin cells from endangered Asian elephants and reproduce them into versatile stem cells that carry mammoth DNA. Specific genes for mammoth fur, fat insulating layers and other adaptations to cold climates are identified by comparing the genes of mummies recovered from permafrost with related Asian elephants.
These embryos can be transferred to a surrogate mother or artificial uterus. If all goes according to plan – and the obstacles are not trivial – the researchers hope to get the first batch of calves in six years.
“Our goal is to create a frost – resistant elephant, but it will look like a mammoth, not because we’re trying to fool anyone, but because we want something similar to a mammoth activity that enjoys time at -40 ° C and does everything that elephants and mammoths in particular do, especially, knock down trees. The church told the Guardian.