S. Korean firm to open major dog cloning centre

August 14, 2009

A South Korean biotechnology firm will early next year open a centre capable eventually of producing up to 1,000 cloned dogs annually, a company executive said Friday.

"We need this new facility to turn dog cloning services into a full-fledged business," Cho Seong-Ryul, director of RNL Bio, told AFP.

The centre in Yongin city south of Seoul will cost some five million dollars and focus on cloning pets, working dogs and endangered species including wolves.

RNL Bio is one of the world's few companies operating dog cloning as a business. Another is San Francisco-based BioArts, which is involved in a patents dispute with the Korean firm.

RNL Bio says it successfully cloned puppies of a retriever trained to sniff out cancer cells in humans. Four puppies are currently being trained in South Korea and Japan.

Last year it arranged to re-create a pitbull terrier for a US woman in what it claimed was the world's first commercial .

(c) 2009 AFP

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