UK pair have dead hound cloned in South Korea

Laura Jacques and Richard Remde are first British patrons of Sooam Biotech Research Foundation

A British duo has hovered to South Korea to await the appearance of two puppies due to be born over Christmas after having their dead domesticated cloned.

Laura Jacques and her collaborator, Richard Remde, from Yorkshire, are the first UK customers to employ the services of the Sooam Biotech Research Foundation, which offers a hound cloning assistance for $100,000( PS67, 000) per canine.

The couples boxer hound, Dylan, died in June, leaving Jacques bereft. I had had Dylan since he was a puppy, she read. I babied him so much better, he was my newborn, my child, my entire world.

Sooam, the leading laboratory in “the worlds” for hound cloning, has developed more than 700 bird-dogs for commercial-grade patrons. The proficiency implies implanting DNA into a blank hound egg that has had the nucleus removed. The egg is given electric shocks to prompt cell division and is then implanted into a surrogate girl hound.

The two puppies due to be born in the coming few days will have identical Dna to Dylan, are likely to resemble him physically and share some of his personality.


Richard Remde, Laura Jacques and bird-dogs. Image: Christopher Thomond for the Guardian

Jacques heard about dog cloning from a documentary about a competition Sooam guided for one UK dog owner to have their hound cloned free of indict. Rebecca Smith was the winner and her dachshund, Winnie, who is still alive, was successfully cloned.

David Kim, a scientist at Sooam, said the birth of the two cloned bird-dogs was eliciting for the laboratory because samples were taken from Dylan 12 dates after he died. This is the first case we have had where cadres have been taken from a dead hound after a long time, he read. Hopefully it will allow us to extend the time after death that we can take cadres for cloning.

There are currently no regulations on the cloning of domesticateds, though the cloning of human beings is illegal, and in August the European parliament voted to proscribe the cloning of farm animals.

Woo-Suk Hwang, one of the leading researchers at the Sooam laboratory, is a contentious person. In 2004 he passed studies and research group at Seoul University, in South Korea, which claimed to have created a cloned human embryo in a test tube. An independent scientific committee knew no evidence of this and in January 2006 the journal Science, which had originally published studies and research, disavowed it.

His work with animals also has its detractors. Helen Wallace, head of Genewatch, has called for a ban on domesticated cloning and said it was disrupting that the practice is unregulated. Cloning for mammals is not normally successful. One of our concerns is that commercial-grade cloning companies can employ grieving domesticated owners, she read. We think that cloning for domesticateds should be banned. “They dont have” justification for it.

The RSPCA is also critical of dog cloning. A representative read: There are serious ethical and welfare concerns relating to the application of cloning engineering to animals. Cloning animals necessitates terms and conditions that lawsuit hurting and distress, with extremely high collapse and mortality rates. There is also a form of evidence that cloned animals regularly sustain physical ailments such as cancers, pneumonia and abnormal raise patterns.

Kim read: We follow animal ethics for the laboratory. We have a third-party auditor that comes from the government and a board of advisers. “Theres” adjusted regulations that they check for. We do not use the surrogate mom bird-dogs who carry the cloned puppies more than once.

Jacques, a hound hiker, and Remde, who administers Heritage Masonry& Conservation, lost Dylan in June after the pet was diagnosed with a brain tumor. The duo acquired the Dna samples themselves, and Remde ran them to South Korea twice the Dna samples didnt grow the first time round.

When the cloned maternities were confirmed, the couple were overjoyed. I couldnt think it is, read Jacques. We were shocked and ecstatic, my legs turned to jelly. They said that the first puppy was owing on Boxing Day and the second one a date later.

The couple have hovered out to South Korea to await the births. It will be like five Christmases seeing all at once, read Remde.

Who is Hwang?

Woo-Suk Hwang, the puppy-cloner of Seoul, achieved instant glory when he and colleagues written a claim that they had created human embryo stem cells from cloned human embryos. An embryo stem-cell can in theory become anything you want it to: a new personalised centre, a genetically same liver, new kidneys, your own replacing nervous system. So it would be awesome to have it in the clinicians toolbox.

The trick was to work out how to derive them, and then how to use them. Nothing yet has got very far. Hwang claimed he had got an embryo root cell once in every 12 tries. People at the time were astounded at the success rate because Dolly the sheep, cloned from the cadres of young adults sheep in 1996, was the only successful outcome of 277 donor eggs, 29 fetu and 13 surrogate fathers.

His fellow scientists took a closer look at the outcome and knew, eventually, that Hwang had exploited more than 2,200 donated eggs and delivered nothing but untrue pretensions. Within a year, his entire busines was under examination and in 2009 he was given a two-year deferred convict after a belief for embezzlement and breach of bioethics.

But the scientists, ethics committees and science honchoes who probed all its statement of claim had to concede one thing: when Hwang claimed in 2005 that he had successfully cloned the first hound, a puppy announced Snuppy, he had not been incorrect. Yes, he had cloned a hound. They cant take that away from him.

But a cloned domesticated achieved generally at great expense and difficulty could never be the same as the lost domesticated. To do the new version, scientists took the nuclear Dna from a test cell and set it into a donor egg from which the mothers own nuclear Dna has been removed. Then, Victor Frankenstein-fashion, a pulsation of electricity reset the cellular clock and knocked off new life in old-time cloth.

The DNA in the chromosomes of every cell may be identical, but the dead swine and the clone had different egg donors. They would have gestated in different wombs. And, because they were born at different times, they are unlikely to have identical raising knowledge, which likewise define reputation. So the make puppy, nonetheless loveable, and nonetheless like in appearance, will be a different swine. There are some things in life you cant have twice.

Tim Radford

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