Therapeutic Cloning Essay

2585 words - 10 pages


Cloning is the use of technology to compose a precise genetic copy of a living organism. The term ‘cloning’ can also be applied to copying cells, a gene or a part of DNA (Healey, J 2007). There are two main techniques of cloning: reproductive and therapeutic. Reproductive cloning is the cloning of a human being. Reproductive cloning has a lot of ethical barriers but some scientists believe that reproductive cloning may one day be legal because of societies increasing acceptance of genetic technologies (Healey, J 2007). Reproductive cloning is a sexual reproduction because both sets of genes come from one ‘parent’. The resulting offspring born from cloning technology has the same genetic make-up as its original parent. The offspring will not be completely identical to its original parent but because of differences in mitochondrial DNA, different pregnancy and environmental influences. Some possible uses for reproductive cloning are infertility, single women, lesbians and it has even been thought that human cloning can be used to ‘bring back the dead’. For example grieving parents wanting to clone their dying or dead child (Healey, J 2007). While some ethical concerns include: Many unknown risks for the baby such as premature aging, biological, social and psychological repercussions. A deceased child can not be ‘brought back’ the cloned child will be the losts child genetic double. The cloning defies the individuality of human beings. An attempt to reproduce asexually goes against human biology and culture. Therapeutic cloning, also called somatic cell transfer (SCNT). It involves taking the nucleus from the skin of the patient and inserting it into an egg whose nucleus has been removed. This new cell will develop into an embryo. Scientists extract stem cells from it and use them to grow tissue. This allows stem cells to be made from a patient that can be reintroduced into the patient’s body without rejection from the immune system. Possible uses for therapeutic cloning involve: Treatment for disorders such as dementia and Parkinson’s. Study for early human development, screening for drugs that may cause birth defects and research disease-specific stem cells to provide on new and targeted drug treatments (Healey, J 2007). There are also many ethical issues for this technique of cloning that contribute to the research of therapeutic cloning. This essay will outline the ethical concerns of therapeutic cloning and stem cell research, Therapeutic cloning practice and policies in other countries, How the Government came to making therapeutic cloning legal in Australia and what the future holds for therapeutic cloning?

Therapeutic cloning and the ethical issues
Therapeutic cloning is the formation of an embryo by cloning practices. Therapeutic cloning is also identified as somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT), for the purpose of extracting stem cells from the embryo. The embryo is a duplicate genetic match to the patient, which means that stem...

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