Cloning stops extinction

Published: Monday 15 February 1999

THE Centre For Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) in Hyderabad will adopt cloning techniques to preserve endangered species like lions and tigers. A centre comprising scientifically designed enclosures will house lions and tigers, to begin with. It will be set up near the Nehru Zoological Park in Hyderabad. The Andhra Pradesh government has already allotted five hectares of land for the centre, informed CCMB director Lalji Singh. He said goats were best suited for the purpose of cloning in the Indian context.

CCMB will also provide cloning techniques to produce pharmaceutical products if biotechnology firms showed interest, said Singh. A mobile laboratory would also become operational within a few months to undertake survey of selecting experimental animals for the programme.

The CCMB has been asked by the Central Zoo Authority (CZA) to find out the extent of genetic variation in lions and tigers, both in the zoos and in the wild.

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