The woolly mammoth has been extinct for about 5,000 years. Previous efforts to clone one have failed at least in part because the tissue scientists were working with was too badly damaged by freezing. Recent techniques seem to have overcome this problem.
So now it’s a matter of…
- Gathering a sample of a frozen mammoth,
- Extracting healthy nuclei,
- Implanting them in a surrogate mother elephant,
- And waiting for the almost 2-year gestation.
All in all, about 4 years, the scientist leading the effort believes.
With cattle, the odds of this whole process working are about 30%, so it’s not entirely unlikely we’ll see a baby mammoth in the near future. It’ll be exciting to post those newborn pics.