Keith Campbell,a prominent biologist who worked on cloning Dolly the sheep,has died at 58,the University of Nottingham said Thursday.
Campbell,who had worked on animal improvement and cloning since 1999,died October 5,university spokesman Tim Utton said. He did not specify the cause.
Campbell began researching animal cloning at the Roslin Institute near Edinburgh in 1991. The experiments led to the birth in 1996 of Dolly the sheep,the first mammal to be cloned from an adult cell.
The sheep was named after voluptuous singer Dolly Parton. Researchers at the time said the sheep was created from a mammary gland cell,and Parton offered a perfect example.
The creation of the sheep captured public imagination and instantly became a scientific sensation. The experiments drew admiration but also anger from some who raised questions about the ethics of cloning.
Campbell later joined Nottingham University as professor of animal development,where he continued research into the cloning process. He was particularly interested in assisted reproduction in both animals and humans,and studied ways to develop reproductive technologies in farm animals.
He was awarded Shaw prize for medicine and life sciences in 2008,along with Ian Wilmut,the lead scientist in the team that created Dolly,and Nobel-winning scientist Shinya Yamanaka.