Published: October 7, 2021

Category: GMO News

In what would seem to be a “Colossal” publicity stunt or a headline from The Onion, a tech entrepreneur and Harvard geneticist have hatched a plan to genetically engineer Asian elephants to resemble long-extinct wooly mammoths as a way to slow global warming. What could possibly go wrong?

Entrepreneur Ben Lamm and geneticist George Church, whose project is called “Colossal,” aim to create a wooly mammoth calf in just six years. Supporters of the project say the lab-grown wooly mammoths could mitigate global warming by slowing melting of the permafrost where methane is currently trapped.

“Our goal is in the successful de-extinction of inter-breedable herds of mammoths that we can leverage in the rewilding of the Arctic. And then we want to leverage those technologies for what we’re calling thoughtful, disruptive conservation,” Lamm told CNBC.

The woolly mammoth has been mostly extinct for 10,000 years, and the last populations died out about 4,000 years ago.

Because the mammoth is genetically similar to an Asian elephant, Church aims to genetically engineer the elephant to withstand ice cold temperatures and turn them loose in Arctic regions of Canada, Alaska, and Siberia. The Colossal calf will look like a wooly mammoth.

Meanwhile, Hollywood producers may envision a new movie: “Jurassic Park comes to the Arctic.”

Source: CNBC

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Organic & Non-GMO Insights October 2021