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VIDEO: Cloned cow Eve already has 16 calves, more on way

BEST FRIENDS: Simon Walton with Eve his first cloned cow.
BEST FRIENDS: Simon Walton with Eve his first cloned cow. Chris Ison Rokcclone

EVE is Simon Walton's biggest success story.

The brangus heifer, which the Australian Reproductive Technologies managing director and biotechnologist helped clone three years ago, returned to his property at Mt Chalmers in time for her third birthday last week.

With one natural calf, 15 embryo calves and six more on the way, Mr Walton said Eve was an incredible animal.

"Three years and nine months ago we had some new, handmade cloning technology," Mr Walton said.

"We wanted to test it out and one of our clients had not long before bought Australia's most expensive Brangus Heifer for $20,000 and so we thought well, if we're going to clone an animal, why not make it a valuable one.

"We applied this new technology and unexpectedly it worked the very first go and nine months later Eve was born."

With such success from Eve, Mr Walton said he was excited to test and improve other cloning technoloy.

"The patent on cloning that surrounds Dolly (a sheep; the first mammal cloned) comes off next year so we are just positioning ourselves now to be in a position that we can perfect the technology," he said.

"One of the problems is that as a technology it hasn't been well accepted in terms of success rate and it has been really expensive.

"Those are the two things we really want to address - the success of the procedure and the price of the end result. We think we will successfully address both of those and have a big impact on the industry.

"We'll continue to do some work on cloning but there is always more technology we are interested in.

"One of the things at the moment, we're looking at why some donors have high pregnancy rates and some have low pregnancy rates. We're using some cutting-edge human IVF technology to help us with that."

Topics:  eve, rockhampton



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