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Dolly the Sheep’s cloned sisters aging gracefully

Technique to create nearly identical copies of animals doesn’t harm health

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11:14am, July 26, 2016
cloned sheep

CLONE CLUB  Dolly the Sheep’s nearly identical sisters — Debbie, Denise, Dianna and Daisy — were produced from the same mammary gland tissue as Dolly. The new clones are not aging prematurely as was feared for Dolly.

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Clones don’t age prematurely, new research on Dolly the Sheep’s sisters suggests.

Researchers and animal welfare activists have been concerned that cloning, or somatic cell nuclear transfer, could cause health problems in cloned animals. Instead, a study of 13 cloned sheep found no signs of early aging or other health problems, researchers report July 26 in Nature Communications.

“These animals were remarkably healthy and fall within the normal range that we’d expect in animals of this age,” said developmental biologist Kevin Sinclair of the University of Nottingham in Leicestershire, England. Sinclair spoke July 25 during a news conference at the EuroScience Open Forum in Manchester, England.

The cloning technique places the DNA-containing nucleus of an adult cell into an egg where the DNA is reprogrammed to an embryonic

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