Seoul University scientists clone two female puppies
▶ Cloned female puppies, Bona and Peace, that will be mates for Snuppy, a male dog cloned last year. Provided by the cloning team
A team of Seoul National University scientists has confirmed it has cloned two female puppies to be mates for the male dog, Snuppy, which the team cloned last year.
The cloned puppies, Afghan hounds like Snuppy, were named Bona and Peace. Bona was born on June 18 and Peace was born on July 10, the team said. The project was launched in March. Of 12 surrogate mother dogs, three became pregnant. The two puppies were born through Caesarian operation.
One more puppy is scheduled to be born around this weekend.
It took 2 1/2 years and 123 surrogate mother dogs to clone Snuppy. “It is meaningful to raise the success rate of cloning dogs from 1.7 percent to 20 percent compared to when we cloned Snuppy,” said a researcher on the project, Dr. Jang Gu.
“Dogs are one of the oldest domestic animals and have diseases similar to humans,” he said. “If cloning dogs becomes more efficient, we will be able to research diabetes and heart diseases using dogs.”
Lee Byung-cheon, a professor at the university and a member of the cloning team, meanwhile, has been suspended by the university’s disciplinary committee.
In June, prosecutors indicted him for fraud regarding the stem cell research led by Hwang Woo-suk. He was suspended for two months in March for involvement in the fabrication of papers on stem cell cloning researches and is waiting for the committee’s final decision today.
by Kwon Keun-young