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Discussion on the question Why were blood and hair follicles from 25 people put on the Moon? calls into question whether this is a stunt or might have any basis in science.

There's two parts to my question:

  1. If somehow preserved well, do hair follicles and blood samples from a group of humans provide sufficient coverage alone to reconstruct a human population as far as the DNA content is concerned? Ignoring that you don't have an egg to put it in, is enough DNA present, or would there be key bits of DNA missing that you'd need a germ line sample in order to get? I suppose this can be asked as "can we clone people from blood and hair follicles alone?"

  2. Would 25 individuals be enough to obtain a viable population of clones?


Background from the linked question:

The Wired.com article A Crashed Israeli Lunar Lander Spilled Tardigrades on the Moon says:

Spivack had planned to send DNA samples to the moon in future versions of the lunar library, not on this mission. But a few weeks before Spivack had to deliver the lunar library to the Israelis, however, he decided to include some DNA in the payload anyway. Ha and an engineer on Spivack’s team added a thin layer of epoxy resin between each layer of nickel, a synthetic equivalent of the fossilized tree resin that preserves ancient insects. Into the resin they tucked hair follicles and blood samples from Spivack and 24 others that he says represent a diverse genetic cross-section of human ancestry, in addition to some dehydrated tardigrades and samples from major holy sites, like the Bodhi tree in India. A few thousand extra dehydrated tardigrades were sprinkled onto tape that was attached to the lunar library.

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    $\begingroup$ If the 25 human samples were from diverse regions of the world, i'd bet that it would be easy to build a human population with medical supports, although the frailties may not make them viable for wild tribe life. $\endgroup$ – com.prehensible Aug 11 at 8:48

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