Page 1 of 4

Stem Cell Research Paper

Continues for 3 more pages »
Read full document

Stem Cell Research Paper

  • By
  • May 2013
  • 1407 Words
  • 1 View
Page 1 of 4
On July 5, 1996, Dolly, a domestic sheep, was born at the Roslin Institute, a research center in Scotland. The birth, however, was far from normal. Dolly had been produced by cloning methods and was born to a surrogate mother (“Cloning Fact Sheet”). The methods used to clone Dolly were once considered to be biologically impossible (Wilmut and Highfield 12). Thus, once Dolly’s birth was announced to the rest of the world, an immediate debate over the ethics of cloning began. In particular, reproductive cloning was widely discussed because it could possibly be accomplished through somatic cell nuclear transfer to clone entire humans (“Cloning Fact Sheet”). For medical, social, religious, and political reasons, there are both proponents and opponents of reproductive human cloning and its ethics. Currently, the best way to deal with reproductive cloning is to ban its use because there are many negative consequences that could arise from using cloning technology.

There are two different types of human cloning: therapeutic cloning and reproductive cloning. The goal of the former is to obtain stem cells from embryos that can be used to study the growth of the human body and to find possible cures and treatments for various diseases (“Cloning Fact Sheet”). The purpose of the latter, on the other hand, is to create a whole human being through cloning. Specifically, reproductive cloning is done using somatic cell nuclear transfer and can theoretically produce a human that has the same exact nuclear DNA as another individual. Currently, though, this technology has only been used to clone animals and has not yet been successful in cloning humans (“Cloning Fact Sheet”). The process constituting somatic cell nuclear transfer begins with the extraction of nuclear genetic material from the cell of an adult donor. Then an egg is deprived of its nucleus, and the DNA taken from the donor cell is placed into the egg. Afterwards, the egg is stimulated by either electric current or...