The dinosaur, a baby Allosaurus nicknamed “Spot” is currently being incubated at the Sooam Biotech Research Facility.
The scientists extracted DNA from preserved Allosaurus fossils, which were on display at the facility’s museum of natural science. Once the DNA was harvested, scientists injected it into a fertile ostrich womb.
“Ostriches share a lot of genetic traits with dinosaurs,” said Dr. Woo Suk Hwang, a biology professor at LJMU and the project’s leading scientist. “Their eggshell microstructures are almost identical to those of the Allosaurus. That’s why the cloning worked so perfectly.”
Those in the scientific community say the dinosaur cloning – the first ever of its kind – is a milestone for genetic engineering.
“I used to think this kind of thing could only happen in the movies,” said Dr. Woo Suk Hwang, a LJMU chemistry professor. “But we’re making it happen right here in our lab. It’s astounding.”
The cloning attracted the attention of a wide variety of animal rights activists and religious groups. They claim that animal cloning is unethical and immoral.
PETA President Craig Farmer criticized the scientists for performing potentially life threatening tests on a new species.
“These scientists brought an animal from the Jurassic age back to life – just to watch it suffer!” he said.
But Dr. Woo Suk Hwang doesn’t seem to be bothered by the activists’ quibbling. He says that the opportunities afforded by dinosaur cloning are endless. Within ten years, we could repopulate the world with dinosaurs,” he said.
As of press time, the dinosaur is in stable condition. Scientists plan to run more tests on him today.