Adult cell cloning (somatic cell nuclear transfer)

 

This is the technique in which any cell in the adult tissue can be obtained and converted into an embryo in an elegant technique framed by Wilmut.  The embryo is then placed in a recipient female uterus or womb in order to carry that embryo to term

This technique used by Wilmut for Dolly was to take a cell from the udder of a Finn Dorset ewe. This cell is then placed in culture with very low concentrations of nutrients.  The cells are deliberately starved (because of this low nutrients) so that they can stop dividing in culture and therefore switch off their active genes.  The next step is to take an unfertilized egg cell from a Scottish Blackface ewe.  The nucleus is removed so that we now have only cytoplasm.  This cytoplasm contains all the machinery necessary to convert any nucleus into the nucleus of an embryo for the cytoplasm plays an important role in switching on and off the genes which are necessary for cellular behaviour.  The cytoplasm of the unfertilized egg stimulates for embryo development.  The next step now is to place the nucleus of the adult cell obtained from the fudder into the empty cytoplasm of the unfertilized egg whose nucleus was removed for the same purpose. The two cells are then placed close to each other and an electrical impulse is passed through them so that they can fuse.  With the fusion occuring, another electrical impulse stimulates the cell to begin to divide.  6 days after this, the embryo is implanted in the uterus of another Blackface ewe which has been synchronized to receive the egg at the right time for its proper development.  It carries the pregnancy to term.

 
Somatic cell nuclear transfer (adult cell cloning)


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Cloning video  [Interactive video text]

      

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



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