High Animal Death Rates End Cloning Project

After 13 years of studying how to prevent abnormalities in cloned animals, AgResearch has ended its cloning project because too many of the animals died.


AgResearch is a New Zealand based company that has spent more than a decade trying to perfect the cloning of animals for use in scientific and medical research. 


Their cloning trials tried to create: animals that produced a type of “super milk”, sheep that were resistant to eczema, pregnant sheep that wanted to eat more food, and special proteins to be used in human medications.


But on Monday the company released a report that said “only 10 percent of the cloned animals survived through the research trials” and because of the” unnecessary suffering” of the animals they had stopped their cloning projects.


The majority of animals died as a result of spontaneous abortions and hydrops – where a cow’s uterus fills with water, leading to euthanasia of the fetus and mother. 


Sixteen calves from mid gestation and beyond aborted or “died in the neonatal period last year.”


Another 10 fetuses or calves were euthanized along with 14 adult cows.


The report also stated that cloned cattle, sheet and goats suffered from medical conditions such as chronic arthritis, pneumonia, lameness and blood poisoning.


Although AgResearch has ended cloning projects, the news is not all good.  The company now plans to focus its attention on a newer research method – Transgenic Technology.


This procedure uses embryonic stem cells to create new life.


However, the first-generation of transgenic animals appears to be having the same high mortality rates as the cloned animals.  Last year two baby goats died and four other animals had to be euthanized.


Scientists at AgResearch say that once the transgenic animals grow to adulthood and have babies of their own, they are far less likely than the cloned animals to pass on any abnormalities.


Hopefully there won’t be too many animals that will have to pay the price to see if this theory right or wrong.


General Manager Dr. Jimmy Suttie said, “The work was being done ultimately for the benefit of humans and scientists took animal welfare standards and ethical issues very seriously.”



Related Stories: 

EU Bans Cloned Farm Animals But Approves Cloned Horses and Bulls

The Most Painful Animal Labs in the Country

Nocton Mega-Dairy in UK Withdraws Plans for Factory Dairy Farm


Creative Commons - Neil Mackinder


Chris G.
.2 years ago

You create sense out of the foremost complex topics.robotics

Edvanir L.
Edvanir L4 years ago

Good for the animals that this has stopped!!

Kati Patelaki
kathy P4 years ago

One ends, another one starts. The arrogance of human beings in its glory.

Terry V.
Terry V5 years ago

You just can't fool Mother Nature.

We are MURDERING our planet, thus ourselves

Lisa Bobbitt
Lisa Bobbitt5 years ago

Lets face it. God is our creator and no man is supposed to try to be Him but be like Him.
We were created to serve and worship the Creator, not to create. It's not our place.

Ginette C.
Ginette C5 years ago

Man wants to control everything and everyone. Let nature take its way.

Darren Tortoise Protectio
Darren G6 years ago

Thank You for sharing

Ginny Pendas
Ginny Pendas6 years ago

this is so wrong poor animals. didn't know people were still doing this. this must be stop!


para entender cuándo algo que sucede a un animal no-humano es digno, respetuoso, alegre, positivo, solidario... me pongo en su lugar. Siempre que veo lo que hacen a otros animales, seres igual de sintientes que nosotros,que les causa daño, dolor, sufrimiento, abuso, muerte, me pongo en su lugar o pongo en su lugar a un ser querido... y con eso me queda claro qué estoy dispuesta a permitir y qué no.

ilse D.
.6 years ago

poor animals, I didnt know they still were doing this. Its simply not right, if nature wants to clone she will do it, again humans try to beat her which ends up in suffering of the living beings they should treasure. Why dont people think first..