Now, a test­tube rhino

Down to Earth - - THE FORTNIGHT -

last-ditch ef­fort to save the world's most en­dan­gered mam­mal— the north­ern white rhino— from extinction, sci­en­tists have suc­cess­fully used in vitro fer­til­i­sa­tion (IVF) to cre­ate hy­brid em­bryos. Only two fe­males from the species sur­vive af­ter Su­dan, the last known male, died in March. The sci­en­tists com­bined sperm from two dead male north­ern white rhi­nos with eggs from the more abun­dant south­ern white rhino—a closely re­lated sub­species. The em­bryos will be im­planted into sur­ro­gate fe­male south­ern white rhi­nos to pro­duce baby rhi­nos that are a mix of both sub­species. The hy­brid ba­bies can then en­sure that at least some of the north­ern white rhino DNA is pre­served, says a study pub­lished in Na­ture Com­mu­ni­ca­tions. The team's goal is to have the first north­ern white rhino calf born in three years, says coau­thor Thomas Hilde­brandt, a pro­fes­sor at the Leib­niz In­sti­tute for Zoo and Wildlife Re­search in Ger­many.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.