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Nuclear Transfer: How
Below is an overview of the cloning process:
EMBRYO: A vertebrate at any stage of development prior to birth or hatching. It is a developing animal in the early stages of growth.
DNA: Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is found in the nucleus of a cell and contains the GENETIC information of an organism.
- To create the cloned embryo, scientists took tissue samples from the male African wildcat, Jazz. These cells were grown in tissue culture to provide a supply of thousands of cells, each with the wildcat's DNA.
- The cells were frozen in the Frozen Zoo.
- Then, the nucleus and DNA were removed from eggs (oocytes) of domestic cats. This is called "oocyte enucleation."
- Frozen-thawed cells from Jazz were inserted into the domestic cat oocyte.
- The domestic cat egg now implanted with African wildcat DNA was exposed to an electric current, causing the new DNA to fuse with the egg, divide, and become a viable embryo.
- The embryo was then implanted into the uterus of a domestic cat surrogate mother, who went on to have a normal pregnancy and gave birth to the clone kitten.
Why remove DNA from the eggs? The nucleus and DNA are removed from the eggs (oocytes) of domestic cats. This is called "oocyte enucleation." Once the chromosomes and polar body are removed from the egg, all that remains inside is cytoplasm. Thus, when the cellular material of the African wildcat is inserted into the domestic cat egg, there will be no genetic information in the egg other than that of the African wildcat.