Best Present in 2015 from South Korea : Cloning Dead Dog
Laura Jacques and Richard Remde might be the luckiest couple on Boxing Day this year. The British couple got the new puppy after cloning dead dog — their beloved boxer dog named Dylan. It wasn’t so surprising if the cloned was made from a living dog, but cloning dead dog which almost two weeks after it died? This is groundbreaking news and revealed the new history.
Cloning dead dog was a miracle of science which successfully put a smile back into the faces of Laura Jacques and Richard Remde, the couple from West Yorkshire, England. Six months ago, the couple were drowned in a deep sorrow when their beloved boxer dog named Dylan died of a heart attack at the age of eight in June, after being diagnosed earlier this year with a brain tumor. Jacques said:
“When it happened I was in total shock, I couldn’t feel my limbs. I had pins and needles everywhere. I didn’t know how I would be able to cope, I thought I would have to throw myself off a bridge or something.”
Jacques firstly heard about dog cloning from a documentary about Rebecca Smith, who won the competition and get her dog cloned for free as the prize. Therefore, when Dylan dead, the couple decided to give a shot to the cloning services from controversial company Sooam Biotech Research Foundation in South Korea. The Sooam Biotech Research Foundation is the only laboratory of its kind in the world, which offers a commercial dog-cloning service for $100,000 per procedure. They have hailed the birth as “a miracle”.
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The laboratory provides a kit to take a biopsy from the abdomen. After Remde follow the instruction, Remde immediately traveled to South Korea with samples of Dylan’s DNA in hopes of creating an exact replica of their fur baby. In a recent interview, Jacques said:
“We got all the cells packaged up and I booked a flight for him and he flew out the next morning,”
“It is a controversial topic and there will be people who don’t agree with it but there will be loads of people that would love to be able to do it”
Unfortunately, the first sample failed, forcing Remde to once again fly to South Korea with a biopsy from Dylan’s abdomen.
“I find it embarrassing telling people that I’ve got my dog in the freezer, but I have got a valid reason,”
By the time the second biopsy arrived, Dylan had already been dead for 12 days. It was a long post from the usual cut off point for successful cloning. However the scientists at Sooam decided to go ahead and push the boundaries of the technique. It’s true that previously Sooam team has successfully cloned a dead dog, but the dog was died only 5 days before cloned. David Kim, a scientist at Sooam told The Guardian that cloning a dead dog which already died for 12 days is the first case for the team.
“This is the first case we have had where cells have been taken from a dead dog after a very long time,”
“Hopefully it will allow us to extend the time after death that we can take cells for cloning.”
Against the odds, cloning dead dog for Dylan was succeeded, producing not just one but two puppy embryos. The first puppy was born to a surrogate mother on December 26th 2015, marking a very special boxing day for Jacques and Remde. The second puppy is expected to be born on Tuesday, December 29th 2015.
Sooam has produced around 700 cloned dogs. To make a clone, scientists take a donor egg from a female dog and remove the nucleus that holding the genetic material which gives an animal its characteristics and personality. Here is the cloning process on Sooam:
The male puppy has been named Chance, and the second puppy will be named Shadow (check out the key dates in the cloning of Dylan here). While the newborn puppy was rubbed clean by veterinary staff, as cited from Telegraph Jacques said:
“After they got him out I still couldn’t quite believe it had happened. But once he started making noises I knew it was real.”
“I can’t believe how much he looks like Dylan. All the colourings and patterns on his body are in exactly the same places as Dylan had them.”
“I was much more overwhelmed with emotion at the birth than I expected to be.”
There are no regulations on the cloning of pets, though the cloning of human beings is still illegal.