Neat, it's a baby mammoth!

This mammoth is preserved good enough that they can study internal organ structure. This is a remarkable find.
Baby mammoth article with picture.

Wow, that’s impressive, after such a huge amount of time.

It looks like a recently dead elephant, with the hair missing.

But can they clone it and have an elephant give birth to it? THAT would be cool. We could put them in Manitoba or something.

I doubt it - any more than we could clone a cow from beef jerky.

It’s not the first baby mammoth find – I have a picture of one found over 40 years ago in my Intro to Fossils text. But this one is MUCH better preserved – it almost looks as if it just died, whereas the older one looks as if it was badly stitched back together.
By the way, did you know that there’s a baby Stegosauris skeleton at Dinosaur National Monument? It’s woefully incomplete (and the one on display is just a cast), but it’s the cutest dinosaur I ever saw.

I always look for mammoth references in the news, because they still can find fleshed out bodies.

If we can’t deal with reintroducing wolves to Yellowstone, what the hell is a farmer going to do when Willie knocks over his grain silo for a snack? :slight_smile:

But she’s not dried out, she’s frozen.

I don’t know if they’ve successfully cloned animals from frozen tissue but it seems more likely than from dried tissue.

After this amount of time, she’s probably frozen and dried out.

That we can ‘obtain promising results in genetics and microbiology’ is a far cry from being able to clone the animal. We could obtain promising results in genetics and microbiology from a leather wallet.

Man, that is way cool!

I dunno about that. I remember seeing a documentary once, where they cloned dinosaurs using frog DNA or something. I believe they kept them on an island somewhere, tho there may have been an incident of some sort.

Don’t you dare! I’ll only end up stranded on your tropical theme park island to be chased by herds of prehistoric brontohandbags or stalked by the terrifying velocipurses!

The problem with freezing is that the ice crystals tear apart cellular structure. While we will be able to find and replicate DNA (and I say “we,” when I actually mean “those really smart, hard working, well financed guys over there”), I would be astonished if the tissues are in good enough condition to even think about cloning. Besides which, if we want to clone a mammoth, let’s at least get the elephant down first.

And did you know that mammoths are more closely related to Asian elephants than Asian and African elephants are?


I demand that the noble mastodon be given equal time to these attention whoring mammoths.

Right. But “I don’t think someone **would **attempt to reproduce the mammoth…” (emphasis mine) is also a far cry from “Due to dehydration, there’s too much damage to the cells’ nucleii for anyone to reproduce the mammoth using current state of the art cloning technology, which has successfully cloned animals using a closely related but different species of host mother…” (but I don’t know if it’s been done with previously frozen samples or not.)

He goes on to suggest that one could and perhaps even should reproduce more recently extinct animals as if that’s somehow linked to this mammoth. Maybe it was just sloppy wording on his or the reporter’s part. Can we just agree on: there’s not enough information given in that article for us to know if it’s possible or not?

DNA is an extremely stable molecule. I freeze-dry my genetic samples all the time. It lets me grind the whole tissue mass into a fine powder and go from there. It never stops me from getting perfectly good DNA.

I think the default assumption with any ancient remains should be that we can’t clone it, not with the technology of today or the near future. There may very well be sufficient material to be able to map the genome of the animal (essentially a jigsaw puzzle - reconstructing it logically by finding overlapping sequences in many broken pieces, etc), but even if we have it fully mapped, that’s not enough - because we don’t have anything like the technology required to rebuild it chemically and physically, in order to insert it into a living cell.

Seriously, any time any fossil or remains turns up with anything resembling soft tissue, there’s a knee-jerk reaction from the media and general public: ‘so we can clone it, right? right?’ - the reported end quote sounds to me very much like a scientist brushing off just such an excited, hopelessly-optimistic question, without actually slapping it down or rolling his eyes and saying “yeah, whatever”.

But not something you could then use for cloning the animal, as I understand it.

Allow me to translate…CITE!