A dog which retrieved survivors from the wreckage of the World Trade Centre has been successfully cloned, Agence France Press reports.
BioArts International last year held a contest to determine the world’s most “cloneworthy” dog, in what they called the “Golden Clone Giveaway”. Genetic immortality was awarded to Trakr, the valorous Alsatian responsible for discovering the last human survivor of the terrorist attack on New York, September 11 2001.
Lou Hawthorne, Chief Executive of BioArts, said: “We received many very touching submissions to our contest, each describing some truly amazing dogs, but Trakr’s story blew us away.”
Five healthy German Shepherd puppies have been cloned from the prestigious pooch’s DNA, following the assitance of South Korea’s SooAm Biotech Research Foundation.
“Trakr was an extraordinary search and rescue dog. His work at Ground Zero was the culmination of his career,” said retired RCMP dog handler James Symington, Trakr’s human partner.
It is hoped the puppies, dubbed Trustt, Valor, Prodigy, Solace and Deja Vu (pictured), will follow in the pawprints of their genetic forbear and embark (haha) on a career of rescue work.
“If they have the same attributes Trakr did, then hopefully they’ll develop into world class search and rescue dogs,” said Symington, as the assembled hacks dabbed their eyes with their handkerchieves.
In addition to the emotional potency of cloning a dead 9/11 hero, Trakr’s descendants somewhat vindicate the work of Hwang Woo-Suk, the South Korean scientist recently disgraced for falsifying his results. His five-for-the-price of-one attitude to American heroes is sure to go a long way towards his academic rehabilitation.