Hello, again, Dolly

February 17, 2017

(The Economist) – IN THE summer of 1996 Karen Mycock, a cell biologist, was attending a wedding in the Scottish highlands. Returning to her hotel to change her hat, she found a fax pushed under her door. It said: “She’s been born and she has a white face and furry legs.” An unusual birth announcement; an unusual birth. In February Ms Mycock (now Mrs Walker), who worked at the Roslin Institute, an animal-research centre near Edinburgh, had passed a tiny jolt of electricity through two sheep cells in a dish. One was an egg cell which had had its nucleus, the bit of the cell which contains almost all its genes, removed. The other, its gene-bearing nucleus intact, was from the udder of another ewe. The electric jolt had caused the two cells to fuse, forming an embryo.