Genome study reveals how the woolly mammoth thrived in the cold



The scientists also acknowledge that DNA samples can be used to bring back the mammoth via cloning just like what happened in the “Jurassic World” movie.

During such a exploration, the scientific community spotted the familial fabric from two different mammoths found stored in ice cubes somewhere between northeastern Siberia. The remains were found years ago, and belong to animals that lived thousands of years apart.

Researchers deciphered the genomes of two woolly mammoths that died about 20,000 and 60,000 years ago.

The team was able to identify the genes which were responsible for the woolly mammoth’s cold adapting features, including thick curly hair and small ears and tail. The study, which found an abundant 1.4 million genetic variations between the modern elephant and woolly mammoth of days gone by, yielded one of the most impressive figures that scientists have ever had to date.

Next the group tried to figure out what these genetic changes meant, looking up earlier studies of how changes in the same genes affected mice as a way to infer how they might have impacted mammoths.

“The collection of 2,020 amino-acid variants that we discovered in mammoths, but that our analysis showed are not present in living elephants, represents a treasure trove that can be mined for the genetic causes of mammoth-specific characteristics and whose functions can be tested in further experiments”, said Miller.

Mammoths had a distinctive version of a gene known to play a role in sensing outside temperature, moderating the biology of fat, and regulating hair growth.

‘Modern humans are not responsible for the extinction of mammoths, so we owe no debt to nature, ‘ Lynch added.

While Lynch argues that we will “technically” have the capability to recreate the woolly mammoth, he doesn’t think it is wise to do so.

Scientists at University of Chicago and Penn State have completed the first comprehensive, functional analysis of the woolly mammoth genome. Lynch said. “I personally think no. Mammoths are extinct and the environment in which they lived has changed”. Instead, scientists have managed to reconstruct and reactivate a zombie genome showing why woolly mammoths liked cold temperatures better than hotter ones, like their distant cousins, the elephants, do.

Previous efforts to sequence preserved mammoth DNA were error-prone or yielded insights into only a limited number of genes.

If you have every wanted to know more the Woolly Mammoth but could never find any new developments in their study, here’s your chance. Mammoths apparently have become fatter and harrier than elephants via a gene called TRPV3, a gene that produced a protein that doesn’t respond to heat as much.

The study, “Elephantid genomes reveal the molecular bases of Woolly Mammoth adaptations to the arctic”, was supported by the National Science Foundation.

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p style=”text-align: center;”>Woolly mammoths survived the extreme cold by genetic mutations that developed thick hair and other mammoth traits and features

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