Resurrected woolly mammoth gene reveals how they thrived in the cold

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Resurrected Woolly Mammoth Gene Reveals How They Thrived In The Cold

Researchers have completed a comprehensive analysis of the woolly mammoth's genome and have pinpointed many specific ways in which it differs from that of their elephant relatives.

Those include physical characteristics like skull shape and ear size and internal workings such as insulin and fat production processes.

Many of the variations explain how mammoths were able to keep themselves warm, while elephants often possess mechanisms for staying cool.

Vincent Lynch, one of the study authors, explained in a video related to the news release, "What we did was resurrect one of the woolly mammoth warm temperature sensors...we found out that the woolly mammoth protein actually was much less active than the other Asian elephants' proteins – which suggests that they were less responsive to cold temperatures – which kind of makes sense given that they lived somewhere that was really cold."

Though their research continues, the information they've gathered is enough to show promise that a comprehensive blueprint of the extinct animal can be created.

Commenting on whether the woolly mammoth should be brought back to life, Lynch says, "I personally think no. Mammoths are extinct and the environment in which they lived has changed. There are many animals on the edge of extinction that we should be helping instead."

See the slideshow below for photos of some of the world's most endangered animals:
World's endangered animals
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Resurrected woolly mammoth gene reveals how they thrived in the cold

Amur leopard

(Photo: Jeff Pachoud, AFP/Getty Images)

Black rhino

(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Hawksbill turtle

(AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili)

Leatherback turtle

(AP Photo/David McFadden)

Mountain gorilla

(AP Photo/Jerome Delay)


(AP Photo/Apichart Weerawong)

South China tiger

(AP Photo/Patricia Hagen, File)

Sumatran elephant

(AP Photo/Irwin Fedriansyah)

Sumatran orangutan

(AP Photo/Itsuo Inouye)

Sumatran rhino

(AP Photo)

Sumatran tiger

(AP photo)

Western lowland gorilla

(AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

Yangtze finless porpoise

(Photo by China Photos/Getty Images)

African wild dog

(AP Photo/Stew Milne)

Amur tiger

(AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

Bonobo baby Sambo looks around in the zoo of Frankfurt, Germany, Tuesday, April 24, 2012. The male chimpanzee baby was born on January 7 and had to be raised by hand. During the next days the baby will meet with it's fellow species in the zoo. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)

Asian elephant

(AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Bengal tiger

(AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

Black spider monkey

(Photo: Mauricio Lima, AFP/Getty Images)

Black-footed ferret

(AP Photo/Elijah Van Benschoten, File)

Bornean orangutan

(AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)

Bluefin tuna

(AP Photo/Chris Park, File)


(AP Photo/Jens Meyer)

Giant panda

(AP Photo/Lai Seng Sin)

Sea lion

(AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)


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