Introduction Moral Arguments in Support of Human Cloning A. Is There a Moral Right to Use Human Cloning? B. What Individual or Social Benefits Might Human Cloning Produce? Moral Arguments Against Human Cloning A. Would the Use of Human Cloning Violate Important Moral Rights? B. What Individual or Social Harms Might Human Cloning Produce? Conclusion References E-3 E-4 E-4 E-7 E-11 E-11 E-14 E-20 E-21
The world of science and the public at large were both shocked and fascinated by the announcement in the journal Nature by Ian Wilmut and his colleagues that they had successfully cloned a sheep from a single cell of an adult sheep (Wilmut 1997). Scientists were in part surprised, because many had believed that after the very early stage of embryo development at which differentiation of cell function begins to take place, it would not be possible to achieve cloning of an adult mammal by nuclear transfer. In this process, the nucleus from the cell of an adult mammal is inserted into an ennucleated ovum, and the resulting embryo develops following the complete genetic code of the mammal from which the inserted nucleus was obtained. But some scientists and much of the public were troubled or apparently even horrified at the prospect that if adult mammals such as sheep could be cloned, then cloning of adult humans by the same process would likely be possible as well. Of course, the process is far from perfected even with sheep— it took 276 failures by Wilmut and his colleagues to produce Dolly, their one success. Whether the process can be successfully replicated in other mammals, much less in humans, is not now known. But those who were horrified at the prospect of human cloning were not assuaged by the fact that the science with humans is not yet there, for it looked to them now perilously close. The response of most scientific and political leaders to the prospect of human cloning, indeed of Dr. Wilmut as... [continues]
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