Cloning Cattle

The Methods in the Madness
  • Björn Oback
  • David N. Wells

Abstract

Somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) is much more widely and efficiently practiced in cattle than in any other species, making this arguably the most important mammal cloned to date. While the initial objective behind cattle cloning was commercially driven—in particular to multiply genetically superior animals with desired phenotypic traits and to produce genetically modified animals—researchers have now started to use bovine SCNT as a tool to address diverse questions in developmental and cell biology. In this paper, we review current cattle cloning methodologies and their potential technical or biological pitfalls at any step of the procedure. In doing so, we focus on one methodological parameter, namely donor cell selection. We emphasize the impact of epigenetic and genetic differences between embryonic, germ, and somatic donor cell types on cloning efficiency. Lastly, we discuss adult phenotypes and fitness of cloned cattle and their offspring and illustrate some of the more imminent commercial cattle cloning applications.

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Copyright information

© Landes Bioscience and Springer Science+Business Media 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Björn Oback
    • 1
  • David N. Wells
    • 1
  1. 1.Reproductive TechnologiesAgResearch Ltd., Ruakura Research CentreHamiltonNew Zealand

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