“Resurrection” of the Mammoth: How Feasible is the Task?

Russian and Chinese scientists managed to completely recreate the DNA of the Siberian mammoth. This step may be decisive in an attempt to “resurrect” mammoths on our planet.

According to the reports of geneticists, the difference between the genes of mammoths and elephants is significant, so it is impossible to say with certainty that in a few years a baby mammoth will appear in one of the laboratories.

So from 2016 to 2021, Japanese geneticists had 4 unsuccessful attempts to artificially inseminate a female elephant with a male seed with some “blotches” of mammoth DNA. At the same time, rejection did not occur in the first stages, but in the second week of pregnancy. What exactly are the reasons for the failure, the researchers are not ready to say.

Since 2010, two American scientists have stated that by the beginning of 2020 there will already be several baby mammoths on our planet. As a result, the spent 5 and 14 billion dollars went nowhere.

Experiments on the artificial cultivation of an extinct animal species were unsuccessful. Despite huge investments and practically endless possibilities, American researchers have not been able to completely replace the elephant genome with the mammoth genome in the elephant cell.

In 2021, an American scientist officially announced that the project was closed. “Resurrecting” the mammoth proved to be an impossible task at the moment.

However, Russian and Chinese experts do not think so. To fully replace the genome of one animal with another, liquid mammoth blood is needed. Fortunately, the Ice Age catastrophe came suddenly and several mammoth specimens contained not only liquid blood, but also semen. Now these samples are in the location of the working group.

Despite the almost perfect preservation, mammoth spermatozoa died without exception, as for blood, it is with it that scientists are working at the moment.

The first task is to solve the rejection problem. Theoretically, it is possible to fertilize a cell of a female elephant, but further it is necessary to prevent the rejection of biological material. This task is going to be solved with the help of live mammoth bone marrow cells, which were extracted from the sample in 2020.

The following comment was made by a Chinese specialist involved in the mammoth revival project: “Today we have quite a variety of Siberian mammoth biomaterials in excellent condition. Unfortunately, this is clearly not enough to solve at once all the difficulties associated with the birth of a baby mammoth.

Scientists from Russia tried to carry out the fertilization of the egg of a female elephant, but this path turned out to be erroneous. Now an artificial egg is being created on the basis of the mammoth genome taken from the bone marrow.

Probably, a special incubator will become the carrier of the embryo, since the period of development of the baby elephant in the womb of the female is several months less than the full development of the mammoth embryo.

There is a small chance that scientists will be able to “resurrect” an extinct species. Truth, now it is important to overcome the first stage – to create and fertilize an artificial egg. This is many times more difficult than maintaining the conditions for the further development of the embryo.

The creation of artificial (laboratory) life is far from a fantasy. Crossbreeding of different plant and animal species has long been practiced by geneticists. Of course, it is practically impossible to cross a giraffe and a platypus, but related species of animals quite successfully undergo genetic mixing.

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