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Noori-Pashmina goat no more, huge loss for scientific fraternity

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SRINAGAR: The World’s first cloned Pashmina goat Noori passed away last week in Kashmir. The scientists at Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agriculture Sciences and Technology-Kashmir had achieved a rare feat in March 2012 after it successfully cloned the first rare female Pashmina goat.
“Noori passed away on March 15 at Shuhama farm of University at an age of 11 years,” lead project scientist Riyaz Ahmad Shah at SKAUST-K informed.
“It was an age related death as normal average life span of a Pashmina Goat is around 11 to 12 years and Noori has almost lived that life,” he added.
He further said that a post-mortem was also carried out and report is still awaited. It two years for Shah, the top scientist at Centre of Animal Biotechnology at SKAUST-K and his six-member team of scientists to produce ‘Noori’, India’s second cloned animal. Shah was also the key researcher in the team of scientists at National Dairy Research Institute, Karnal in 2009 wherein India’s first cloned buffalo calf ‘Garima’ was produced.
The world’s first animal clone Dolly, a sheep was created on July 5, 1996 and it survived for seven years.
The rare Himalayan goat ‘Noori’ was cloned using the advanced reproductive techniques.
Noori gave birth to seven off-springs, out of which four are alive,” Shah said. Shah said he was feeling sad on the death of Noori as it is a big loss for scientists.
“Pashmina goats are exclusive in Ladakh region and successful cloning technology had given hope that it will help in yielding Pashmina in lower altitude areas,” said scientist.

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