The scientists aiming to 'bring back' the woolly mammoth originally wanted to do it using 40,000-year-old cells
Picture this: A beast with most of the features of a woolly mammoth (think long, shaggy hair, plus special adaptations to sub-zero temperatures, like subcutaneous fat and specially-adapted blood) plus a few elephant-like traits (like a slightly longer body).
Nope, it's not your Pottermore Patronus.
It's the animal that a team of Harvard scientists hopes to create (or "bring back" as some advocates of the controversial practice known as de-extinction might say). And they want to do it in the next few years by combining the DNA of an elephant and a woolly mammoth using the gene-editing technology Crispr.
The team introduced their idea for the "mammophant," better known as "an elephant with a number of mammoth traits," at the American Association for the Advancement of
Scientists have been talking about resurrecting the woolly mammoth, which went extinct thousands of years ago, for years, but the 2013 discovery of an astonishingly well-preserved mammoth carcass - complete with ancient blood - jumpstarted much of the excitement about the idea.
Here's a look into how they aimed to create a "mammophant" in 2014, before Crispr was a thing.
More from this author
- Business Insider is hiring a science reporter
- 14 science-backed ways to sleep better
- 15 places where computer science majors dream of w...
- Ad tech company Audience Science is shutting down
- How to take the perfect vacation, according to sci...
- Science says happier people have these 9 things in...
- 9 science-backed ways to appear more attractive