Ask a DNA expert 'What is needed to revive dinosaurs?'

The development of cloning technology in recent years has been remarkable, and in July 2022,

a Japanese research team succeeded in an experiment to create cloned mice from 'freeze-dried somatic cells' for the first time in the world . With the development of cloning technology, there should be many people who have expectations that ``Is it possible to create clones of already extinct dinosaurs?'' Hendrik Poiner, director of the Ancient DNA Center of McMaster University in Canada, tells what is needed to revive such dinosaurs.

Ask a DNA Expert: What Would It Take to Bring Back the Dinosaurs? | The Walrus

All living things are made up of DNA. When an animal dies, DNA remains in a part of its body, so scientists use heat to extract it. DNA extracted in this way can be divided and copied many times. However, cloning requires a complete set of genetic information, the genome . Since the genome consists of millions of DNA strands, it is necessary to determine the exact sequence of DNA in order to create a clone.

Poiner said, ``Being able to determine such a deep and complete DNA sequence was never considered feasible in the late 1990s and early 2000s. would have been completed in less than 30 seconds using current DNA sequencers .'

If it is possible to create a copy of the genome, it is possible to put the modified chromosome into the surrogate mother's egg cell and impregnate the surrogate mother. For example, by transplanting mammoth genomes into Asian elephants, it will be possible to clone mammoths.

Studies in the 1970s and 1980s suggested that DNA over 100,000 years ago was beyond the limit of detection. However, several decades later, researchers succeeded in extracting DNA from fossils of horses and mammoths 700,000 and 1,000,000 years ago. The lifespan of DNA is entirely dependent on the environment, and the DNA of a mammoth that lived in cold, dry climates 5,000 years ago is much longer than that of a horse buried in

Lake Ontario 50 years ago. It seems to be in a good state of preservation.

When the movie ' Jurassic Park ' came out in 1993, Poiner said he had no idea that dinosaurs could be cloned. However, now it is said that technology has developed to the level that it is sufficiently possible to create a copy of the genome. So Poinar argues that no one knows what the future holds, given the possibility of finding fossils containing living dinosaur DNA.

There are still several species on the planet that are threatened with extinction due to climate change. That's why restoring diversity to existing populations is worthwhile, Poinar said. However, 'I think it's a bad idea to revive an ancient species like dinosaurs that has already gone extinct out of curiosity.' We should leave it in the past,' said Poinar.

in Science,   Creature, Posted by logu_ii