Feeds

US boffins breed cloned wildcats

Hope for endangered species

Intelligent flash storage arrays

American scientists have pulled off a breeding first by producing two litters of African wildcat kittens from cloned parents. Although the species is not at risk, the Audubon Center for Research of Endangered Species team reckons the technique could one day save other animals from extinction.

Eight kittens from two litters was the final tally, the BBC reports. Two females - Madge and Caty, both cloned from another female - gave birth to five and three kittens respectively. The proud father in both cases was Ditteaux, himself a clone.

The happy events come at the end of several years' work with the African wildcats. The Center first brewed up some kittens via in vitro fertilisation in 1999, and produced clones in 2003.

Audubon Center lead boffin, Dr Betsy Dresser, explained: "By improving the cloning process and then encouraging cloned animals to breed and make babies, we can revive the genes of individuals who might not be reproductively viable otherwise, and we can save genes from animals in the wild."

But while the technique holds some future hope for threatened species, the WWF's Species Programme director, Dr Susan Lieberman, cautioned: "While cloning is an intriguing scientific breakthrough that may enhance captive breeding in the years to come, it currently has no value for conservating endangered species in the wild. Cloning does nothing to reduce the most pressing threats to endangered species and their habitats; conservation requires work on entire populations and their habitats." ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Boffins who stare at goats: I do believe they’re SHRINKING
Alpine chamois being squashed by global warming
Comet Siding Spring revealed as flying molehill
Hiding from this space pimple isn't going to do humanity's reputation any good
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
LONG ARM of the SAUR: Brachially gifted dino bone conundrum solved
Deinocheirus mirificus was a bit of a knuckle dragger
MARS NEEDS WOMEN, claims NASA pseudo 'naut: They eat less
'Some might find this idea offensive' boffin admits
No sail: NASA spikes Sunjammer
'Solar sail' demonstrator project binned
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.