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Bringing Thylacine back to life; Thylacine genome
Topic Started: Dec 14 2017, 03:53 PM (861 Views)
Wallacetic
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Scientists obtain Tasmanian Tiger genome, and might even bring it back from extinction
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A new study published in Nature Ecology and Evolution announces that scientists have finally been able to obtain the complete nuclear genome of the thylacine species, revealing an impressive amount about the creature’s ancestry. According to the study, the dog-like marsupial was only very loosely related to modern day canines, having shared a common ancestor some 160 million years ago. It was an incredibly special animal, and a branch of the evolutionary tree that stood out on its own. “They were this bizarre and singular species. There was nothing else like them in the world at the time,” one of the researchers, Charles Feigin of the University of Melbourne, Australia, explains. “They look just like a dog or wolf, but they’re a marsupial.”

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Read more... http://bgr.com/2017/12/11/tasmanian-tiger-genome-sequence-extinction-revival/


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Taipan
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Yes, the pup preserved in ethanol offers hope. I think the study also found the Thylacine (species) suffered a fair degree of inbreeding.
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DinosaurMichael
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Very great news. One step up to bringing an species back we caused by our hands. ^_^
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Palaeoscincus
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Just a question, if they ever do come to a point where they have enough genetic material and understanding to bring the thylacine back, which living related species would be the carrier? A numbat? Tasmanian devil? And doesn't the "mother" species have to be fairly closely related to nourish the developing young? Like with mammoths, they say an Asian elephant can be the egg carrier since that species is considered very closely related and can act as a surrogate. But elephants and mammoths are the same family, nothing living is in the same family as a thylacine.
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DinosaurMichael
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Palaeoscincus
Dec 17 2017, 09:57 AM
Just a question, if they ever do come to a point where they have enough genetic material and understanding to bring the thylacine back, which living related species would be the carrier? A numbat? Tasmanian devil? And doesn't the "mother" species have to be fairly closely related to nourish the developing young? Like with mammoths, they say an Asian elephant can be the egg carrier since that species is considered very closely related and can act as a surrogate. But elephants and mammoths are the same family, nothing living is in the same family as a thylacine.
I would say Tasmanian Devil considering of all the marsupials is probably its closest relative and living carnivorous marsupial.
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Carnoferox
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The numbat is actually the thylacine's closest living relative, but it is much too small to carry a thylacine fetus to term. Other candidates like the Tasmian devil or tiger quoll are probably too distantly related and would still be too small. With the lack of a suitable surrogate I don't see the cloning of the thylacine happening anytime soon.
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Taipan
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Palaeoscincus
Dec 17 2017, 09:57 AM
Just a question, if they ever do come to a point where they have enough genetic material and understanding to bring the thylacine back, which living related species would be the carrier? A numbat? Tasmanian devil? And doesn't the "mother" species have to be fairly closely related to nourish the developing young? Like with mammoths, they say an Asian elephant can be the egg carrier since that species is considered very closely related and can act as a surrogate. But elephants and mammoths are the same family, nothing living is in the same family as a thylacine.


Regardless of whether they used a Devil or a Numbat, the end result should it be successful would be a Thylacine hybrid.

"A related criticism was that in the absence of a thylacine egg into which the recovered and reconstituted nuclear DNA could be injected, the egg of a close relative, again the devil or the numbat, would have to be used. But because that egg would contain the surrogate species’ mitochondrial DNA in its cytoplasm, the embryo and eventual pup would not be 100 per cent thylacine. A small part would be the surrogate species."

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Palaeoscincus
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Thank you for that info. Taipan or anyone else, would a mammoth brought back via surrogacy also be only a hybrid? Or is there enough similarities between Asian elephants and mammoths, that we wouldnt be able to tell the difference and could more easily "fill in the blanks"?
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Taipan
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Dec 19 2017, 11:52 AM
Thank you for that info. Taipan or anyone else, would a mammoth brought back via surrogacy also be only a hybrid? Or is there enough similarities between Asian elephants and mammoths, that we wouldnt be able to tell the difference and could more easily "fill in the blanks"?


I think they would need a woolly mammoth egg to create a pure "Woolly Mammoth". Current technology suggests without an egg from a Woolly Mammoth, they would produce a hybrid - an "Mammophant"

"“Our aim is to produce a hybrid elephant-mammoth embryo,” said Prof George Church. “Actually, it would be more like an elephant with a number of mammoth traits. We’re not there yet, but it could happen in a couple of years.”

The creature, sometimes referred to as a “mammophant”, would be partly elephant, but with features such as small ears, subcutaneous fat, long shaggy hair and cold-adapted blood. The mammoth genes for these traits are spliced into the elephant DNA using the powerful gene-editing tool, Crispr."

https://www.theguardian.com/science/2017/feb/16/woolly-mammoth-resurrection-scientists

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Bruno
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It would be easier than for cloning a mammoth. First the marsupials fetuses are very small and they are still a larva when they are born. Second the gestation time is very short, no need to wait for 2 years.
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Carnoferox
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Bruno
Dec 29 2017, 05:53 AM
It would be easier than for cloning a mammoth. First the marsupials fetuses are very small and they are still a larva when they are born. Second the gestation time is very short, no need to wait for 2 years.
No it wouldn't, at least with current technology. While the woolly mammoth has a suitable surrogate in the Asian elephant, the thylacine lacks a surrogate that is both closely-related and large enough to carry a fetus to term.
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Bruno
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Yes, the mammoth has a potential surrogate except that nobody knows if it may work (Asian elephant cloning has never been done as far as I know) and it would take almost 2 years for one try.

With a marsupial, at birth, the baby is as small as a grain of rice then even with a numbat it should work at least for birth. No need of a specific womb but you will after have to find the correct milk quality which will definitely be an issue. But the gestation is so short that in the 2 years required for one try with a mammoth you can probably do more than 20 tries with a thylacine.

Even if today we are not ready for any of the two, I feel it could be easier with the thylacine.
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Claudiu Constantin Nicolaescu
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In nature when a species disappear, there is a natural reason for this extinction. Revival of extinct species and cloning are pointless, as an extinct species is useless for nature.
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Ausar
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Bruno
Dec 30 2017, 02:30 AM
Yes, the mammoth has a potential surrogate except that nobody knows if it may work (Asian elephant cloning has never been done as far as I know) and it would take almost 2 years for one try.

With a marsupial, at birth, the baby is as small as a grain of rice then even with a numbat it should work at least for birth. No need of a specific womb but you will after have to find the correct milk quality which will definitely be an issue. But the gestation is so short that in the 2 years required for one try with a mammoth you can probably do more than 20 tries with a thylacine.

Even if today we are not ready for any of the two, I feel it could be easier with the thylacine.
That still doesn't take into account how distantly related the thylacine and numbat are compared to living elephants and mammoths. If an Asian elephant fails as a surrogate for a mammoth, a numbat would fail even harder as one for a thylacine.
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Bruno
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Yes maybe.

Best thing is to try and see what comes out. That is the beauty of science.

Anyway, still a long way before getting a clone of an extinct specy. Whatever comes first thylacine, mammoth, passenger pigeon or others it will be a great news. Particularly that these species disapeared by our fault.
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