Prometea (born May 28, 2003), a Haflinger foal, is the first cloned horse and the first to be born from and carried by its cloning mother. Her birth was announced publicly on August 6, 2003. Born 36 kilogram after a natural delivery and a full-term pregnancy in Laboratory of Reproductive Technology, Cremona, Italy, At 2 months old, Prometea weighed 100 kg (220 lb)
The ethics of cloning on horses still needs to be fully explored but there are concerns of genetic variability. Some registries will not allow cloned horses to be entered.
The horse is the seventh species to be cloned. Dr. Cesare Galli and others at the lab experimented with 841 reconstructed embryos; of the 14 viable embryos, four were implanted in surrogate mothers - only that of Prometea succeeded in being born. Prometea was born to her twin mother who her cloning cells originated from. Texas A&M University was also undertaking a horse-cloning project when the Italian team first succeeded. Horse cloning like Prometea could eliminate the problem of champion racing geldings. The Jockey Club of North America Thoroughbred Horses has proclaimed, however, that it will allow no cloned horse in their races.
Although horses are not threatened with extinction or other major problem now, cloning may create less genetic diversity among horses by using these horses to breed. This increases the life time of one breeding set of genetics resulting in less variability in a population. In conservation biology, there are concerns related to the lack of genetic diversity that allows for continuation of the species through genetic variation.
- BioCentre // The Centre for Bioethics & Public Policy
- (See Cloning for a list and names)
- Galli, Cesare; Lagutina, Irina; Crotti, Gabriella; Colleoni, Silvia; Turini, Paola; Ponderato, Nunzia; Duchi, Roberto; Lazzari, Giovanna (August 2003). "A cloned horse born to its dam twin". Nature. 424 (6949): 635–635. doi:10.1038/424635a. ISSN 1476-4687.
- Genetics and conservation of rare plants. Falk, Donald A., Holsinger, Kent E. New York: Oxford University Press. 1991. ISBN 1423729242. OCLC 228117551.CS1 maint: others (link)
- World's first cloned horse is born New Scientist. Referenced March 6, 2011.
- Cloning Horseplay Science Now. Referenced March 6, 2011.
|This equine-related article is a stub. You can help Wikipedia by expanding it.|