Investor Peter Thiel has reportedly infused the project to bring back the woolly mammoth with $100,000, Technology Review reports.
According to Tech Review's Antonio Regalado, Ben Mezrich's new book on the effort by Harvard Medical School's George Church and others to resurrect the woolly mammoth using CRISPR and other genome-editing tools reports that Thiel invested in the project in 2015.
Church tells Regalado that he had breakfast with Thiel and that Thiel wanted to fund the most outlandish project Church was working on. Church says he gave him three options, including a gene therapy-based anti-aging project, using human neurons to develop artificial intelligence, and the mammoth, and Thiel went for the mammoth project.
Stewart Brand, who co-founded Revive & Restore along with Ryan Phelan, adds, though, that the project isn't well funded. "The reality is that no big money is going into it. It's our own money, except for Thiel," he says
Business Insider adds that the project wouldn't truly bring back the woolly mammoth, but rather create an elephant-woolly mammoth hybrid. In addition, Regalado notes that the mammoth project appears to be "a back-burner operation that's advancing fitfully at best."