The first cloned dog of the world named Snuppy has been re-cloned, and from it, three cloned puppies have been created in a study. The scientists carried out this re-cloning event of an already cloned dog to learn more about the viability of cloning animals and also to find out whether cloning of animals speeds up the aging process, causes an unknown birth defect, or results in untimely deaths.
A group of nine researchers from Seoul National University, Michigan State University and the University of Illinois prepared carried out the study, and their paper was published in the journal Science reports. Actually, the first cloning event in the history of dogs happened in 2005 when Tai, a male Afghan hound was cloned.
The team consisting of 45 experts led by Seoul National University scientists Woo Suk Hwang carried out the cloning. They inserted the cells of Tai’s ear into the eggs collected from a female donor. Before that, they removed the nucleus of the egg. After that, the egg with Tai’s cells was manipulated by the scientists generate embryos. A total of 1095 embryos were implanted into the uterus of 123 surrogate mothers.
Unfortunately, only three pregnancies were possible and out of these three, one dog survived, and that was Snuppy. It led a healthy life and died at the age of 10. Its generic father Tai died at the age of 12, and both the dogs died of cancer which was not unique or rare. So, Scientists were happy that they cloned puppy actually managed to live a normal life and died of a common disease and the lifespan also did not vary that much. When Snuppy was five years, old scientists decided to clone the first cloned Dog again. The collected stem cells from Snuppy and used them to implant 74 embryos. Out of these, only 4 cloned puppies took birth. Unfortunately, one of them died out of acute diarrhea. Hence three re-cloned puppies or you can say Snuppy 2.0 survived.
The latest study informed that when the research paper was in its initial phase, the puppies were nine months old and were living a normal and healthy life. Now when the paper got published, they are around seven years of age. Surely, this is a wonderful achievement in the field of animal cloning. But still more research needs to be done to know the viability of these cloned animals and whether they undergo an accelerated aging process or have any unknown birth defects.