Cloning after Dolly - Professor Ian Wilmut Talks
Sep 6, 2005 - 12:08:38 AM

The leader of the team that produced Dolly the sheep, the first animal to develop after nuclear transfer from an adult cell, will present a talk at the University of Glasgow on Wednesday 7 September about the future of this area of research.

Professor Ian Wilmut from the University of Edinburgh, set up a research group to determine the molecular mechanisms that are important for normal development of cloned embryos and to use that knowledge in biology, medicine and agriculture.

Over the past nine years, research has been focused on the factors regulating embryo development after nuclear transfer. The work led to the first birth of live lambs from embryo-derived cells and then to the birth of lambs derived from foetal and adult cells, including Dolly. Subsequently, genetic changes were introduced into sheep by nuclear transfer from cultured modified cells.

A considerable improvement in efficiency is required before wide scale use for livestock. The opportunity to introduce precise genetic changes to livestock is available for the first time through the use of gene targeting procedures in cultured cells that are used as nuclear donors. The research has the potential application in the production of organs for transplantation to humans, studies of human genetic disease and basic research in to the control of gene expression and function.

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