Human Cloning: Should it be permitted?
Uploaded by psalmf82 on Dec 18, 2006
Human cloning is often viewed from a negative standpoint and very rarely noted for its positive capabilities. Many people are against cloning due their own personal or religious morals but there are actually many beneficial features to it. Such possible features include: cloning of body appendages and organs, and harvesting stem cells from embryos for medical solutions; reproduction for infertile couples, and single females and males. The most important outcome of cloning is possibility of saving millions of lives. Possible benefits of human cloning will be discussed throughout this paper.
Human Cloning: Should It Be Permitted?
Cloning is the general term for research activity that creates a copy of some biological entity. A gene, cell, or organism is an example of an entity. There are two types of cloning; therapeutic and reproductive.
Therapeutic cloning is for medical purposes only. The difference between therapeutic and reproductive is in the treatment of the embryo once nuclear transfusion has occurred. Nuclear transfusion is when the nucleus of a cell is drawn and inserted into an egg, in hope of creating an embryo (2004 http://humancloning.org/index.php). Therapeutic cloning focuses mainly on stem cells, which in the future could prevent and possibly cure many life-threatening diseases. Stem cells are found inside embryos during the first two weeks of their development and have the potential to develop into any kind of cell in the human body. After two weeks stem cells change into more specialized tissues. They can be kept in culture and replenished continuously. Stem cells act by binding and making vital body parts stronger to withstand an illness or disease, while eliminating the weaker cells.
Reproductive cloning aims on developing a new individual from nuclear transfusion. This method of cloning focuses more on the benefit of infertile couples and a terminally ill person having his or her clone live a better life, with better odds of the possibility of living.
The first attempts at artificial cloning were started as early as the beginning of this century. The first implantation of a nucleus into an egg cell occurred in 1952 by Robert Briggs and Thomas J. King in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Briggs and King transferred the nuclei of a Leopard Frog's eggs. Unfortunately, the cloning attempt was unsuccessful and the egg cells did not develop. Nuclear transfer of the embryo cells was not...