Harvard scientists insert wooly mammoth DNA into elephant DNA

Sarah Knapton, for The Telegraph:

Beth Shapiro of the University of California, an expert on ancient DNA, said: “If we really want to bring mammoths back to life, then we’re in luck, as far as DNA preservation goes.

“Some mammoths lived in places where their bones and carcasses were buried in permafrost, like being stuck in a freezer for 30,000-plus years.

“It’s in pretty shoddy condition, so hard to piece together, but if we sort through these tiny pieces, finding where they fit along the elephant genome, then we can slowly build a lot of the mammoth genome.”

I have to say, I see no ethical problems with scientists pursuing this. Presenting this research as an either-or proposition that directly takes away from our efforts to preserve the life that exists on this planet is a false dichotomy. And I don’t think poachers are looking for scientific excuses to justify their immoral behavior. So bring on the mammoths! Also, I just want another excuse to use the word chimera.