Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Extinct ibex is resurrected by cloning

An extinct animal has been brought back to life for the first time after being cloned from frozen tissue.

By Richard Gray and Roger Dobson

Young Spanish ibex (Capra pyrenaica), Sierra de Gredos, Spain Photo: Jose Luis GOMEZ de FRANCISCO/naturepl.com

The Pyrenean ibex, a form of wild mountain goat, was officially declared extinct in 2000 when the last-known animal of its kind was found dead in northern Spain.

Shortly before its death, scientists preserved skin samples of the goat, a subspecies of the Spanish ibex that live in mountain ranges across the country, in liquid nitrogen.

Using DNA taken from these skin samples, the scientists were able to replace the genetic material in eggs from domestic goats, to clone a female Pyrenean ibex, or bucardo as they are known. It is the first time an extinct animal has been cloned.


Professor Millar said: "I think this is an exciting advance as it does show the potential of being able to regenerate extinct species."

Extinct ibex is resurrected by cloning

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