Cloning: How it works and what it could do for your herd
Cloning technology is no longer exclusive to high-tech labs; this technology is available for dairy producers to utilize on their operations – speeding up genetic advancement.
Cloning or SCNT (somatic cell nuclear transfer) as we know it has been around since 1996 when Dolly the sheep was born after being cloned by the Ian Wilmut and Keith Campbell labs at the Roslin Institute. It was revolutionary at the time since Dolly was an adult animal. How was it possible you could produce a “genetic twin” to an adult animal?
Now, 27 years later, cloning is part of the ART (assisted reproductive technology) toolbox progressive breeders use along with A.I. (artificial insemination), ET (embryo transfer), IVF (in vitro fertilization) and SS (sexed/sorted semen). When I am asked to describe cloning in laymen’s terms, it is a simple explanation. Cloning allows you to produce an identical twin from a rockstar animal, just born at a later place and time. It allows a producer to reap the benefits of that “once in a lifetime” animal more than once in a lifetime.
August 2, 2023