Scientists in Japan have ‘awakened’ the 28,000-year-old cells of an ancient woolly mammoth, taking them one step closer to bringing the extinct animals back to life.
Yuka, a preserved mammoth, was discovered nine years ago in northern Siberia’s frozen permafrost wasteland, according to the ScienceAlert website.
Scientists are now engaged in implanting Yuka’s well-preserved cell nuclei into the egg cells of mice.
Kei Miyamoto, a genetic engineer from Kindai University, said cell activity could happen and parts of it could be recreated even though a remarkable amount of time has passed.
The scientists suggested that further functions such as DNA replication and transcription could be induced by activating less-damaged samples.
Miyamoto said that once they obtain cell nuclei in better condition, experiments on cell division could be carried out in the future.
He added, however, that there is a long way to go before the world could see a resurrection of the species.
* Gozde Bayar contributed to this story from Ankara