Here is Argentinian biologist Adrian Mutto on how to clone your very own pony (or one for me):
Dr. Mutto starts with an egg extracted minutes earlier from a mare.
Dr. Adrian Mutto: You can see here, this is an egg. And with that needle, we eliminate all DNA of each egg.
Next, he replaces it with the DNA of the horse they want to clone.
Dr. Adrian Mutto: The next step is introduce again into the, into the egg the needle. This is the DNA into the egg.
Lesley Stahl: You did it?
Dr. Adrian Mutto: Yeah. This is our cell and this is the egg.
Lesley Stahl: And that’s it.
Dr. Adrian Mutto: That’s it.
The new embryos are then incubated for one week. No sperm has been involved.
Dr. Adrian Mutto: We don’t need the sperm.
Lesley Stahl: There’s no male–
Dr. Adrian Mutto: Yes. Yes, no male here. Only me.
Lesley Stahl: But– but that’s incredible. The– there– it’s– so it’s not a male-female reproduction at all.
So that’s cloning!
For the high-end pony cloner: Adolfo Cambiaso, the number one ranked polo player in the world, dominates the sport in large part because of cloning. Polo enthusiast Texan Alan Meeker of Crestview Genetics joined forces with Dr. Mutto and Argentine tycoon Ernesto Gutiérrez and got to cloning. They proceeded to clone Cambiaso’s favorite 17-year-old mare Cuartetera, multiple times, clones of which he rode to win the 2017 Argentine Open, aka the Super Bowl/World Series of polo. When one clone gets tired, he just picks another clone and keeps on playing. There are 14 clones of Dolfina Cuartetera to date, and they are all breathtakingly beautiful to look at and wonder at what it means to be a clone. A clone of Cuartetera was bought for $800,000 at an auction, making it the most expensive horse sale in polo history. These clones are no longer for sale unfortunately, only their foals.
If you’d like a more rustic, hardy pony, scientists have found a 40,000-year-old foal in Siberia and they’re going to be cloning it as soon as possible, maybe in time for Christmas.
Reality Changing Observations:
Q1. Cloned ponies are rewriting the sport of polo; what ethical considerations are there around this use of technology?
Q2. What spiritual considerations are there around this use of technology?
Q3. Although I would obviously prefer a horse, what (or who) would you clone?