Music

Owner of John Lennon's tooth hopes to clone the late Beatle

Aug. 22, 2013 at 9:33 AM ET

Image: John Lennon
Getty Images file
John Lennon, flashing a toothy grin in 1967.

The dentist who purchased John Lennon's rotten molar for $31,000 at a 2011 auction now has plans for the tooth: He's getting it genetically sequenced in the hopes of cloning the musician, who died in 1980.

Seriously. Dr. Michael Zuk has started up a website, JohnLennonDNA.com and put out a press release with all the gory details. 

"I am nervous and excited at the possibility that we will be able to fully sequence John Lennon's DNA, very soon I hope," Dr. Zuk said in the release. "With researchers working on ways to clone mammoths, the same technology certainly could make human cloning a reality."

"To potentially say I had a small part in bringing back one of rock's greatest stars would be mind-blowing," he added.

As Rolling Stone wrote, Lennon had given an extracted molar to a housekeeper for disposal in the mid-1960s, but the magazine says Lennon also said she should give the tooth to her Beatles-loving daughter. So the tooth became a family heirloom until it was sold in Nov. 2011. 

Dr. Zuk has also permitted a fragment from the molar to be put into a clay sculpture of John Lennon created by his sister, which in 2012 toured the U.K. to promote the charity Smile Train. 

But that's not all; Dr. Zuk's press release goes on to note that the "molar has been busy" since being sold. "It participated in a number of charitable ventures" including a line of John Lennon DNA pendants and a documentary.

Maybe it's time to get the tooth its own agent.

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