I couldn’t improve upon the title in the New York Times International Edition article on Korea’s nascent dog cloning industry so it’s a direct quote. It appears that the disgraced Dr. Hwang Woo Suk is competing with a former student to create the world’s first commerically viable process.
Per the article:
The high-stakes battle pits South Korea’s best-known cloning experts against each other: One is Hwang Woo Suk… other is his estranged protégé, Lee Byeong Chun, who also has been indicted on fraud charges.
In 2005, Hwang and Lee created the world’s first cloned dog, Snuppy. But since then they have split into rival laboratories, each vying to become the world’s top animal cloning center. The competition is spurring technological advances, bringing down the cost of cloning dogs and raising the prospects for a new South Korean export industry.
New industry? Yeah, for all of us who happen to have an extra $100-150k lying around to copy a dog. Well, there may be good reasons to do so, but generally that much money for fido v.2.0, or a bowl of 보신탕, (yeah, you knew that one was coming so might as well get it out of the way) is a little steep for me.
Hwang and Lee are garnering all the credit, but it’s probably sandal wearing grad students, buried deep within the bowels of a lab at SNU who are doing all the work.