Human Reproductive Cloning Should be Banned

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Human Reproductive Cloning Should be Banned

The issues concerning human reproductive cloning are shrouded in controversy, perhaps overshadowing the true advantages of cloning technology. Therapeutic cloning, which is often misunderstood as reproductive cloning, is less controversial than the latter as it does not involve the creating of an individual being. Instead, vital stem cells are extracted from human embryos, in order to generate tissues and organs for transplant.

The goal of this process is strictly to harvest stem cells, resulting in the creation of “cloned organs”, which can be used to treat heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and cancer.

However, because reproductive cloning involves the creation of a specific being with specific characteristics it is much more controversial, and has much more at stake than therapeutic cloning. There are definitely advantages of reproductive cloning: individuals with fertility problems would be able to produce biologically related children, and couples who risk passing genetic disease to offspring would be able to have healthy children. However, cloning technology is still primitive, and although several attempts have yielded successful clones, human reproductive cloning should be temporarily banned because it is highly inefficient, extremely dangerous, and ethically irresponsible.

Although many mammalian species have been successfully cloned, cloning procedures are still primitive, and thus, are prone to failure. Certain species, including humans, are more resistant to somatic cell nuclear transfer than others are, and therefore have a lower success rate. Scottish scientists at the Roslin Institute went through 276 nuclear transfer procedures in order to produce Dolly the Sheep i...

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...s should be banned until sufficient information and technology can safely harness a human clone.

Studies have found the health of clones to be widely inconsistent, and until the number of viable offspring produced can match that of natural procreation, cloning should not be considered an alternative. When juxtaposed with natural procreation, cloning does not seem a healthy nor sensible choice. Furthermore, insufficient information on a clone’s mental development, which is crucial to a healthy human, suggests that it would be potentially dangerous and ethically irresponsible to clone humans. Cloning has demonstrated the power of human creation, and has pushed human restraint, intellect, and religion to vast new potentials. However, cloning is still a primitive technology that must first be developed before and research on human reproductive cloning should be done.
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