Science 2 min read

Scientists Find Method of Resurrecting Extinct Species

Simon Vasut /

Simon Vasut /

Last year, some researchers found a species of horse known as Lenskaya in the Batagaika depression.

In case you’re wondering why the breed doesn’t sound familiar, that’s because it no longer exists. The Lena horse has been extinct for thousands of years.

Now, scientists in the Yakutsk region of Siberia are trying to clone the species. With any luck, the team could find viable cells and bring the extinct species back to life again.

Sounds simple enough, right? Well, not really.

While extracting and growing a viable somatic cell sounds pretty straightforward, the researchers have failed in their previous 20 attempts. But, that could change soon.

According to a report from the Siberian Times earlier this week, the researchers have managed to extract liquid blood from the foal’s surprisingly well-preserved heart.

In his interview with the Russian news agency TASS, head of the Mammoth Museum in Yakutsk, Semyon Grigoryev said:

“As in previous cases of really well-preserved remains of prehistoric animals, the cause of death was drowning in mud which froze and turned into the permafrost.”

While Grigoryev is not entirely sure that the team can grow a viable cell from the blood sample, it won’t stop them from trying. However, if the researchers succeed, they would need a surrogate mare to give birth to a new line of Lenskaya breeds.

Furthermore, it could serve as a groundwork for bringing a wooly mammoth back to life again – which the researchers are also trying to do.

The Ethical and Technological Issues Of Cloning The Horse

As expected, bringing an extinct species to life again comes with several ethical and technological challenges.

Aside from a diminished quality of life for the clone, there is the issue of genetic diversity and interbreeding. Also, the researchers have to figure out how to create an Ice Age habitat to host the revived species.

Despite these challenges, cloning remains a practical way of resurrecting extinct species.

Read More: Scientists Reactivate Cell of 28,000-Year-Old Mammoth

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Sumbo Bello is a creative writer who enjoys creating data-driven content for news sites. In his spare time, he plays basketball and listens to Coldplay.

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    Claire Smith April 20 at 7:06 am GMT


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