Forward-thinking Beatles fan Michael Zuk bought the tooth for a mere $30,000, and now he wants to give his rock idol a second chance at life. ‘You cannot do any better than bringing back someone who was taken from this world too early.’
GEORGE STROUD/GETTY IMAGES; COURTESY OMEGA AUCTION HOUSE
Gone too soon: John Lennon died at age 40 in December 1980. ‘ … bringing him back gives him a second chance almost,’ Zuk said.
A Beatlemaniac hopes to clone John Lennon using DNA from one of the late singer-songwriter’s molars despite pleas from those skeptical of human cloning to let it be.
Canadian dentist Michael Zuk bought Lennon’s rotten tooth at an auction in 2011. He asks if scientists think replicating mammoths is within reach, why not the walrus himself?
“He built up a fortune that he didn’t get to enjoy,” Zuk told the Daily News. “For someone else to end his life at age 40, bringing him back gives him a second chance almost.”
Michael Zuk bought the molar in 2011 after the son of the rock star’s former housekeeper decided to auction it off.
Countless Beatle fans can remember where they were on Dec. 8, 1980, when Lennon was murdered outside the Dakota, at the corner of 72nd St. and Central Park West in Manhattan.
“Someone killed him, some crazed guy who had access to guns,” Zuk said. “Society just allowed a guy who was signing autographs and was friendly to somebody to get gunned down by a wacko.”
Zuk says he wants to give these fans another, happier memory: the day Lennon comes back to life.
Zuk has pledged not to attempt cloning the legend anywhere it would be illegal to do so.
“You cannot do any better than bringing back someone who was taken from this world too early,” he said.
The Lennon enthusiast purchased the rock star relic for more than $30,000 from the son of Lennon’s former housekeeper, Dot Jarlett, who acquired the tooth after it was removed in the late 60s. It had been in that family ever since.
The “discolored molar” was reportedly too fragile for DNA testing at the time of the sale, but Zuk hopes that advances in genetic research will enable him to convert the former Beatle’s DNA into stem cells.
The Beatles perform on the ‘Ed Sullivan Show’ in New York in 1964. Paul McCartney (l-r), George Harrison and John Lennon. Ringo Starr is on drums.
He argues that the “science is almost there” and that any research into cloning race horses, mice or mastodons could ultimately be applied to humans.
“It’s the unknown. These are legitimate questions that are right on the edge of science right now,” Zuk told The News.
Zuk said the tooth is currently in an undisclosed American laboratory and that he would not attempt to clone a human in any country where it is illegal.
He also claims to own one of Elvis Presley’s teeth.