China's first cloned cat born in Beijing
A company in Beijing announced on Monday that it had successfully bred China's first cloned cat, reports China Science and Technology Daily.
A photo of China's first cloned cat, a kitten named Garlic, shared on Sina Weibo by Scientific Exploration. [Screenshot: China Plus]
"The kitten named Garlic was born on July 21 in a laboratory of the biotechnology company Sinogene. It was born from an embryo carried by a surrogate mother," said Wang Jidong, the CEO of Sinogene. "Garlic has been verified as a cloned cat by a third-party verification organization, and is currently in a good condition."
The birth of the kitten is the result of a cloning program that began last August. Chen Dayuan, a researcher from the Institute of Zoology at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, said the technology developed by the company has a high success rate: one cloned kitten from four implanted surrogates.
It's rare for cats to be successfully cloned, said Shi Zhensheng, a professor from the Veterinary Medicine College at China Agricultural University. Cats have unique reproductive characteristics, which make them difficult to clone. The success of Sinogene marks a step forward in China's cloning research sector.
The cloning technology used to create Garlic will help China to build a genetic library of endangered species, with the goal of breeding species under threat of extinction.