The Tianjin government has signed a deal with a local genetic technology company aiming to build the world’s largest clone factory, China’s central government reported on its official website on Saturday last week.
The project, hosted by Yingke Boya Genetic Technologies Ltd., will receive a government investment of 200 million yuan ($31.3 million) and will focus on cloning working dogs, pet dogs, racehorses and non-human primates. These animals will be used for commercial services and also for improving breeds, according to Xinhua.
Apart from the major clone project, the factory also plans to set up a cloning lab, a gene bank of diverse species and a science education center.
Scientists have cloned mice, cattle and other animals since the world’s first cloned sheep, Dolly, was born on July 5, 1996 in Britain. Since 2000, Chinese scientists have cloned sheep, cattle and pigs.
The Yingke Boya Genetic Technologies Ltd. is a subsidiary of the Chinese company Boyalife Group. Boyalife co-established China’s first company in the eastern Shandong Province, providing commercial cloning service with Sooam Biotech Research Foundation from South Korea in September 2014. So far, it has cloned more than 500 working dogs for countries worldwide.