Malaysia : the cloning will be able to resurrect the Sumatran rhino ? - The Point

last November, Iman, the last Sumatran rhino in Malaysia is death. Scientists malay contemplating using the technique of cloning, using tissue and cells of Iman

Malaysia : the cloning will be able to resurrect the Sumatran rhino ? - The Point

last November, Iman, the last Sumatran rhino in Malaysia is death. Scientists malay contemplating using the technique of cloning, using tissue and cells of Iman and other rhinos who are deceased, in order to give birth to babies with the aim of developing this species as critically endangered on the entire planet, says CNN.

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The project is led by a team from the international islamic University Malaysia (IIUM). Dr. Muhammad Lokman Bin Md. Isa, one of the lead researchers, explains to CNN that it is not yet too late to act : "Before the death of the three rhinos [the last survivors in Malaysia], we collected their cells, and they are still alive – that is why I am confident enough. "These cells come from the heart, lungs, brain and kidneys of animals. The team was also able to collect stem cells.

Only 80 Sumatran rhino still life

stem cells can become an embryo that could be implanted in a surrogate mother. But the chances of success are not guaranteed : the fertilization might fail, or the pregnancy, once the embryo is implanted. Scientists can also use the technique of somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT), which had been used to clone Dolly the sheep in 1996. It takes a nucleus from an adult cell (except sperm or egg) with its DNA in order to implant it in an egg that was not fertilized from which the nucleus has been removed. The techniques are all studied by scientists. Only 80 Sumatran rhino would be in life.

Read also China : a company managed to clone a cat

The Sumatran rhino are the smallest species of rhinoceros in the world. They are listed among the species in danger of extinction by the World Wildlife Fund. The International Rhino Foundation estimates that there are less than 80 still alive in the world, between Indonesia and Thailand. The population decline was initially caused by poaching for their horns, which were coveted as an ingredient of traditional asian medicine. Later, the overpopulation, the human has encroached on the natural habitat of the rhino, preventing them to gather and reproduce. There are only five species of rhino in the world, and all are threatened. Some sub-species have already gone extinct such as the black rhino of the West, a native of West Africa.

Updated Date: 14 August 2020, 10:33

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