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Electrofusion apparatus used to create Dolly the sheep, Scotland, 1996

Electrofusion apparatus used to create Dolly  the sheep, Scotland, 1996

Credits: National Railway Museum

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Dolly the sheep was the first mammal cloned from an adult cell. The cloning process was jump-started using a pulse from this electrofusion machine at the Roslin Institute in Scotland. Dolly was created by taking the DNA from an adult sheep’s mammary cell which was then inserted into a DNA-free egg. An electrical pulse from this machine stimulated the egg and the donor DNA into behaving like a newly fertilised egg. The egg developed into a cluster of cells (a blastocyst) which was then implanted into a surrogate mother sheep. Dolly was born in 1996. She later gave birth to a number of lambs. The name ‘Dolly’ was inspired by country and western singer, Dolly Parton.

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Glossary: cloning

A process where cells are produced asexually (neither male, nor female) and are genetically identical to the parent cell from which they are produced.

Glossary: electrofusion apparatus

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