"Apparently there is the potential for looking at maybe cloning parts of it," he said.
His successor shelved the project in 2005, but Archer is now involved in the Lazarus Projectwhich aims to resurrect the southern gastric-brooding frog, a smaller animal which became extinct in the 1980s.
He told the Weekend Herald that his team had extracted DNA from the extinct frog and enabled it to reproduce itself.
"It's quite clear the extinct animal's DNA has been replicating itself, but we still don't have a tadpole. We think we understand what we have to do," he said.
"My whole goal was simply to get another animal across the line, you have to get over people's pessimism or innate scepticism. Then we can go back to the thylacine and others."
The project uses a technique called somatic cell nuclear transfer, extracting the nucleus from a cell of the extinct animal and swapping it into an egg of the nearest living relative.
Another team of scientists published the complete genome of the Tasmanian tiger in 2017, showing that it was 89 per cent the same as a Tasmanian devil but quite different from a wolf even though its head shape was virtually identical - showing that the two species evolved independently thousands of kilometres apart.
A New Zealand expert on ancient DNA, Otago Palaeogenetics Laboratory director Dr Nic Rawlence, said he opposed resurrecting extinct species because their spaces in the ecosystem had now been filled by others and research money should go to conserving existing species.
But Archer said somatic cell nuclear transfer was "another club in the bag" of tools that could be used to preserve endangered species, and the thylacine's extinction was so recent that no other species had taken its place.
"The habitats that it occupied in Tasmania are still there and are still intact. The animals that it ate are still there. There is no competitor," he said.
"If you can bring it back, you could put it back in the same habitat."
Thylacinus cynocephalus (thylacine).
Family: Marsupials. A relative of other Australian marsupials such as the kangaroo which all carry their young in pouches.
Size: About 60cm tall and 100-130cm long, weighing 20-30kg, slightly smaller than a grey wolf.
Markings: Dark stripes on its back, earning it the nickname "tiger".
History: Australia's top land predator until humans introduced the dingo about 3500 years ago. It became extinct on the mainland about 3200 years ago but survived in Tasmania until some time after the last captured animal died in Hobart Zoo in 1936.