Scientist believes he can bring Neanderthal back to life
A genetics professor at Harvard’s Medical School believes he can bring the long-extinct Neanderthal back to life — with the right mother.
George Church told German newspaper Spiegel Online that the DNA of the Neanderthal, a long extinct relative of man, has been more or less rebuilt, a process called genetic sequencing.
He said 454 Life Sciences began a project in 2005 with the Max Planck Institute to sequence the genetic code of a 30,000 year old Neanderthal woman.
The sequence, now nearly complete, will let scientists look at the genetic blueprint of humankind’s nearest relative, understand its biology and possibly create a living person.
He argues that with the blueprint, it’s very possible to bring back a Neanderthal.
“We have lots of Neanderthal parts around the lab,” he said. “We are creating Neanderthal cells. Let’s say someone has a healthy, normal Neanderthal baby. Well, then, everyone will want to have a Neanderthal kid. Were they superstrong or supersmart? Who knows? But there’s one way to find out.”
Researchers finished sequencing the genome of another extinct human relative, last year, the denisovan — based solely off a piece of fingerbone and two molars.
More: Spiegel Online.