By Carrie Friese
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Additional info for Cloning Wild Life: Zoos, Captivity, and the Future of Endangered Animals
Technology is here understood as a possible solution to contemporary environmental problems that humans have created. Technology can improve the “health” of both humans and animals if research is jointly carried out. Cloned endangered animals live to represent such an imagined future. This chapter begins by describing what cloning an endangered animal looks like within this set of classificatory practices. I focus on the microlevel practices involved at the Audubon Center for Research of Endangered Species (ACRES) in cloning an endangered sand cat.
The dominant language of “cloning endangered animals” assumes that the somatic cell donor is the subject of the reproductive process. This language ignores the involvement of an egg cell donor and the corresponding inheritance of mitochondrial DNA from an animal of a different, domestic species. S. 19 Indeed, 34 << Debating Cloning genetic reductionism is acutely present in contemporary cloning discourses and practices. 20 It is implicitly assumed that the genetic information found in the nucleus of a cell will reanimate an endangered animal in its entirety.
6 In the United Kingdom, these entities are also referred to as “chybrids” in the popular press and policy papers. For this chapter, I will use the word chimera as it is an idiom that cuts across different social groups and is thereby most likely to be recognized by the greatest number of readers. 7 The biological notion of species assumes, as its primary mechanism, biparental sexual reproduction (Claridge, Dawah, and Wilson 1997). The hybrid has long been viewed as problematic to this notion of species because these animals represent sexual reproduction between two different kinds of animals, resulting in a genetic mixture of DNA in chromosomes of the nucleus.