Human Cloning – Term Paper
Based from Human Genome Project Information (n. d. ), “Cloning is a term traditionally used by scientists to describe different processes for duplicating biological material. ” It means creating a genetically identical copy of an organism. Scientists attempted to clone animals for many years. In fact, there are hundreds of cloned animals existing today. It started in 1952 when a tadpole was cloned. But worldwide attention and concerns only aroused in 1997 when Ian Wilmut and his colleagues at Roslin Institute in Scotland were able to clone a lamb, named Dolly (Bonsor and Conger, n. . ). People began to think for the possibility of using the same procedure to humans. No question human cloning ethics has become a great issue in the past few years. Many people seem to lack understanding of what cloning is. Most often people limit their knowledge of cloning only in its one type called reproductive cloning which intends to produce a fetus identical to its parent. Not knowing that there is another type of cloning called therapeutic cloning that can be used to generate only tissues and organs of humans for transplants.
Reproductive human cloning should be legal as it makes an infertile couple able to have an offspring with the genetic pattern of either the mother or father. It is the desire of most couples to have children and when it is impossible to bare children of your own, some are willing to do anything to have a child even in the most crucial way–cloning. The idea of cloning will allow them to have a child or many children that have the genetic pattern of one of the parents. They can have their own babies by putting cloned embryo into the mother. According to Bonsor and Conger (n. d. , It is made possible through a process called “somatic cell nuclear transfer” (SCNT), the cloning of embryo starts with taking out the egg from a female donor, the doctor will remove its nucleus to form enucleated egg. Then a cell with genetic material of the person to be cloned will be fused to enucleated egg using electric current. The cloned embryo is transferred to a surrogate mother once it reaches a suitable stage. The surrogate mother will give birth to the cloned baby at the end of the normal gestation period. Likewise, couples of gays and lesbians can have their own abies by human cloning (Weekes, 2009). For lesbian couples, one of them can provide an egg and the other doesn’t need to provide a sperm, they can just provide the genes. For gay couples, it is just the same way but will have to find a mother to put the activated embryo in them and born them (Yanmi, 2009). Besides this, human cloning provides a wide range of organs in need, where it could save a lot of lives. In case a person needs an organ such as a pair of lungs, he/she could be cloned. Then the pair of lungs of the identical clone can be taken away for transplant.
Also, according to Yanmi (2009), if a family member had died, it can be cloned. In this way, the pain of the family will be cured. With all the potential benefits of reproductive cloning for infertile couples, homosexual couples, and for treatment of diseases, it is beaten by the disadvantages listed by Pros to ban reproductive human cloning. Many bills in the United States are demanding for the prohibition of reproductive cloning since it has numerous medical and ethical disadvantages. The American Medical Association holds four points of reason why cloning should not take place.
They are: 1) there are unknown physical harms introduced by cloning, 2) unknown psychosocial harms introduced by cloning, including violations of autonomy and privacy, 3) impacts on familial and societal relations, and 4) potential effects on the human gene pool. Technology in the first place, as we presently know it, will not effectively support the cloning of humans. As mentioned before, the success rate was quite low. It is reported before that a Korean doctor tried cloning a human but also killed it. No definite reason was stated, but I assume he had created a monster-like being with such abnormalities.
From the conservative’s point of view, cloning is portraying the role of God. They argue that no one has the power to create humans except for God. It is not merely intervention in the body’s natural processes, but the creation of a new and wholly unnatural process of asexual reproduction. Reproductive cloning harms the integrity of the family as they say. Single people will be able to produce offspring without even the physical presence of a partner. From Hutch (2008), “Cloning will lead to eugenics, or the artificial manipulation and control of the characteristics of people. Pros to ban human cloning continues to defend their side as they point out that cloning will also lead to a diminished sense of identity and individuality for the resultant child. Instead of being considered as a unique individual, the child will be a copy of his parent, and be expected to share the same traits and interests, such that his life will no longer be his own. This becomes a violation of the liberty and autonomy that we grant to every human person. These are reasons why reproductive human cloning studies and attempts are banned in more than 50 countries (Bonsor & Conger, n. d. ).
When there are numerous pros prohibiting studies and attempts about reproductive human cloning, therapeutic cloning gains more approval. It could be the new technology to save countless lives in the sense that it is a process of growing a stem cell. “These stem cells could become the basis for customized human repair kits,” (Smith, n. d. ) They can grow replacement organs, such as hearts, livers and skin. It is done in this way, DNA is extracted from a sick person. Then the DNA is then inserted into an enucleated donor egg. The egg then divides like a typical fertilized egg and forms an embryo.
Stem cells are removed from the embryo. Any kind of tissue or organ can be grown from these stem cells to treat various ailments and diseases (Bonsor & Conger, n. d. ). Many are suffering with cancer nowadays. Also with the help of therapeutic human cloning technology could be used to reverse heart attacks. Scientists believe that they may be able to treat heart attack victims by cloning their healthy heart cells and injecting them into the areas of the heart that have been damaged. Heart disease is the number one killer in the United States and several other industrialized countries.
Through therapeutic cloning, cancer may be possible to cure (Smith, n. d. ). Scientists still do not know exactly how cells differentiate into specific kinds of tissue, nor do they understand why cancerous cells lose their differentiation. But, Cloning, at long last, may be the key to understanding differentiation and cancer. It has the potential to improve the lives of hundreds of millions but much work and researches are still needed to make it a realistic option for treating many diseases (Human Genome Project Information, n. . ). The idea of human cloning is very fascinating for only a few and frightening for many, I supposed. Reproductive cloning should not be accepted. According to Governor Engler of Michigan, “Human cloning is wrong; it will be five years from now; and wrong 100 years from now! ” I strongly believe that only God has the sole authority to create human beings. And any artificial or unnatural ways to bring life to this world is unethical. Reproductive cloning is a threat in the essence of our existence, our being, and our own nature.
But as I understand therapeutic cloning, it is a different thing. I am open to the possibility of cloning organs and tissues for curing many types of disease. There is a high demand for human organs worldwide. So, if we can create organs for transplant with the use of the sick person’s own DNA, why not? To avoid patients wishing for one person to die so he can receive an organ for transplant, we can clone organs. Therapeutic cloning is more helpful in the advancement of science and medicine than reproductive cloning.