Huang Yu loved his cat very much. And when the cat died, Huang heard that there was a company that would clone it. As he recalls:
“My cat died of urinary tract disease. I decided to clone him because he was so special and unforgettable.”
And while the cloned cat – named Garlic – is genetically identical to its predecessor, it has its own identity and is currently forming memories.
Now, however, China’s Sinogene Biotechnology Company, which cloned Garlic, is ready to take another step into the unknown and use artificial intelligence to transfer memories from a pet to the clone replacing it, the Global Times reports:
“To make the cloned animal share the same memories with the original, the company is considering the use of artificial intelligence or man-machine interface technology to store them or even pass the memories to cloned animals, the general manager of Sinogene said at the conference.
“Sinogene deputy general manager Zhao Jianping said the successful cloning of Garlic will allow the company to officially start offering cat-cloning services, which is expected to cost 250,000 yuan ($35,400) each.”
According to Zhoa, several cat owners have already signed up for the cloning with memory implants. The company also clones dogs.
How it Works
Just in case you were wondering, here’s how the cloning process being performed in China is done:
“Cloning a cat or dog requires an embryo to be cultivated from the cell of the animal, before being implanted into the surrogate mother’s uterus, Lai explained. The process – from cell extraction to birth – takes at least two months, Lai said.
“The Beijing-based company is mulling using its cloning technology on endangered animals. According to Lai, cloning an endangered animal would require experiments on interspecies cloning, but no scientist has so far successfully cloned a cross species animal due to technological barriers. It’s still unlikely a rabbit can give birth to a pig, for example.”
Good Idea or Big Problem?
Anyone who currently loves or has loved a pet knows how precious they are. They become a member of the family and are beloved by people around the world. Dogs and cats both engender feelings of warmth and devotion in humans. But is cloning the right way to hold onto a cherished pet?
Many scholars remain opposed to the cloning process, arguing that the animals suffer as a result of the process and that it also raises questions about the rights of the animal.
And then there’s the fear that animal cloning will lead to the cloning of humans.
While cloning may seem like the answer a deceased pet, the fact remains that the best thing to do when a pet crosses the Rainbow Bridge is to grieve, remember all the good times, then go rescue another animal and let them fill your heart.
Here’s more on how animals are cloned:
Featured Image Via YouTube Screenshot