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Is cloning ethical?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Cloning By Samuel Pappon Pg1 Contents Introduction.............................................................. Pg3 Molecular cloning............................................. Pg4 Cellular cloning................................................ Pg5 Organism cloning & somatic cell nuclear transfer..........Pg6 Dolly the sheep.................................................. Pg7 Arguments for cloning.......................................... Pg8 Arguments against cloning.....................................Pg9 Conclusion........................................................Pg10 Bibliography......................................................Pg11 Pg2 Introduction Cloning is the name given to the process of making an identical genetic copy of a DNA fragment (molecular cloning), a cell (cellular cloning), or an organism (organism cloning). I will get into these, amongst other methods of cloning at the beginning. Then I will get into the arguments regarding cloning; which will then lead on to my conclusion. Along with producing the genetic twin of an organism, Cloning technologies can be used for many other purposes such as medicine. However, as I mentioned before, there are many ethical and religious issues concerning cloning and I am going to explore them and see which arguments are the most convincing. Pg3 The different types of cloning Molecular cloning When a copy of a DNA fragment is being made it is called molecular cloning and it is frequently used to amplify DNA fragments containing genes, but it can also be used to amplify any DNA sequence such as promoters, non-coding sequences and randomly fragmented DNA. It is used in many biological experiments including large-scale protein production. However, in order to amplify any type of DNA sequence from a living organism, the DNA sequence must have some sort of connection to the origin of replication. ...read more.

Middle

Somatic cell nuclear transfer is when you create an ovum using a donor nucleus. Somatic cell nuclear transfer research can also be used in the first step of the cloning process. 5, 1, 3, 2 Example of nuclear transfer. http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/antenna/dolly/122.asp Pg6 Dolly the sheep In 1996 Dolly the sheep was the first successful mammal to be cloned from an adult cell. The first animal to be cloned ever was a tadpole in 1952. Dolly was made from three other sheep. The scientists made her by taking the nucleus from an egg cell of one of the sheep and replacing it with the nucleus of an udder cell of another sheep. The egg cell was then put into the uterus of another sheep. Dolly is an exact clone of the sheep that donated the nucleus from its udder cell because that is where the Dolly's DNA came from. Cloning Dolly the sheep had a low success rate per fertilized egg; she was born after 277 eggs were used to create 29 embryos, which only produced three lambs at birth, only one of which lived. Seventy calves have been created from 9,000 attempts and one third of them died young. Dolly the sheep had arthritis young died at the age of six; scientists think that this is because she was a baby calf with the DNA of an adult sheep. ...read more.

Conclusion

There are also some practical issues about cloning such as the misuse of life. For example, it took hundreds of attempts to make Dolly the sheep. Pg9 Conclusion In conclusion, I think that although roughly the same amount of arguments for and against cloning was presented in this case study; I am more persuaded that cloning should be allowed. This is because I believe that there are more benefits to be gained from cloning in comparison to the harm it could cause. For instance, consider the advantages cloning processes such as therapeutic cloning could bring to the welfare of humans? However, I think that there should be legal limits to control the abuse of cloning such as the production of an entire human being. Though I believe that cloning is useful, I have considered the alternative and have found that many of the arguments against (especially the ones to do with religion) are not relevant when compared to the fact that human lives could be save. But besides religion, I have also considered the other arguments against cloning such as the number of egg cells used as part of the process. Potentially millions of patients could benefit from stem cell therapy, but patients would require a large number of donated eggs in order to successfully create a single custom therapeutic stem cell line. Cloning is a new technique that needs to be developed in practise since a lot of the assumptions made about the benefits of cloning are only in theory. ...read more.

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