Rewinding the process of mammalian extinction

Joseph Saragusty, Sebastian Diecke, Micha Drukker, Barbara Durrant, Inbar Friedrich Ben-Nun, Cesare Galli, Frank Göritz, Katsuhiko Hayashi, Robert Hermes, Susanne Holtze, Stacey Johnson, Giovanna Lazzari, Pasqualino Loi, Jeanne F. Loring, Keisuke Okita, Marilyn B. Renfree, Steven Seet, Thomas Voracek, Jan Stejskal, Oliver A. RyderThomas B. Hildebrandt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Citations (Scopus)


With only three living individuals left on this planet, the northern white rhinoceros (Ceratotherium simum cottoni) could be considered doomed for extinction. It might still be possible, however, to rescue the (sub)species by combining novel stem cell and assisted reproductive technologies. To discuss the various practical options available to us, we convened a multidisciplinary meeting under the name "Conservation by Cellular Technologies." The outcome of this meeting and the proposed road map that, if successfully implemented, would ultimately lead to a self-sustaining population of an extremely endangered species are outlined here. The ideas discussed here, while centered on the northern white rhinoceros, are equally applicable, after proper adjustments, to other mammals on the brink of extinction. Through implementation of these ideas we hope to establish the foundation for reversal of some of the effects of what has been termed the sixth mass extinction event in the history of Earth, and the first anthropogenic one. Zoo Biol. 35:280-292, 2016.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)280-292
Number of pages13
JournalZoo biology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Animal Science and Zoology


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