TO CLONE OR NOT TO CLONE ? Course : Introduction to Biology Professor : Dr. Doxakis Student : EuridikiDamoulianou
To start with……. What is cloning ? …..it is the process of making a clone , a genetically identical copy of an organism by replacing the nucleus of an unfertilized ovum with the nucleus of a body cell from the organism.
How cloning differs from natural production? Humans and most organisms result from sexual production. The female egg is fertilized by the male sperm and an embryo is formed. The embryo’s genetic structure is located in the chromosomes found in the nucleus of every embryonic cell. The new organism obtains one half of its genes from the mother’s egg and the other half from the father’s sperm.
But…in clonig….. The egg nucleus is removed through a microscopic laboratory procedure and replaced with a donor’s nucleus, containing the unique genes of that individual. The egg which grows into an embryo , contains only the donor’s genes. The cloned organism is a near genetic copy of its “sole” parent rather than a random genetic combination of two parents.
A brief history of cloning 1894 : Hans Dreisch cloned a sea urchin by isolating blastomeres. Dreischsepareted the urchin embryo when it was two cells large , and both cells matured into adult organisms. 1902 : The next successful experiment was conducted by German Dr.Hans Spemann on salamander embryos ,producing twins. 1958 :Steward obtained cells from the roots of a mature carrot root and was able to create a normal clone.
1984 : The Danish biologist Steen Willadsen cloned sheep using the DNA from early embryonic cells. Two years later. Willadsen cloned a cow from one week old embryo cells. 1996 :Dolly ( a sheep) was born using a cell from an adult cell by Wilmut and Campbell. The success of this experiment produced more ideas for cloning. A lot of scientists said that it could be used mass-produce genetically identical animals for research on human diseases.
And …finally… After Wilmut’s success , a lot of cloned animals were created , such as a cat in 2001, rabbits in 2002 and dog in 2005.
PET CLONIG : A NEW FASHION The pet cloning started in 1997 when a billionaire from Arizona wanted to clone his dog. He paid millions to a company called Genetics saving and clone in order to clone his dog. The first cloned cat was born in 2001.
The process how to clone a pet 1) The scientists perform a biopsy to a on a live or very recently deceased animal to collect DNA. 2)Next , the tissues are grown and the cells are preserved until the next phase of the cloning process. 3)To produce a cloned embryo ,the cells are treated to prevent them from being assigned to a particular function( hair , skin…).
The genetic material is removed from eggs obtained from random cats. The eggs and cells are fused together by electricity ,resulting in cloned embryos. Multiply cloned embryos are implanted into female cats during an artificially – induced reproductive cycle. The cats may or may not develop pregnancies and are monitored by ultrasound.
Health consequences and survival 1) There is a low survival rate of between 0.5-4.0 percent for cloned embryos from animals of various species. 2)The survival animals can suffer from various diseases, such as cancer , development problems and sudden death. As of February 2005 only six domestic cats are known to be alive. No dog has ever survived clonig.
Dog and cat overpopulation Pet cloning firms charge customers up to $ 50,000 for a cloned cat and about $2,995 to bank a dog’s or a cat’s DNA for future cloning. But…at the same time there are millions of homeless animals. And if this is not enough every day a lot o cats and dogs which live in shelters are euthanized due to lack of adopting homes.
Dogs and cats as productive units The pet cloning industry treats animals as products. One company even sells gift certificates and offers a money- back guarantee if a animal becomes defective or not bears the desired resemblance. Cloning one cat or dog involves many animals used as “production units” in the lab ( from the male dogs who offer their eggs to the female ones who are implanted with cloned embryos).
In general… …Most people have strong emotions with their pets and find it difficult to cope with their pet’s death or illness. Pet cloning companies exploit such emotions and lead the public to believe that their pets can be resurrected through the new cloning technology. Cloning companies take advantage on people’s grieving and gain huge profits.
The consumers are not always aware of the experimental nature of cloning and the animal suffering that cloning involves. Most people believe that a cloned-animal is a carbon-copy of its owner. Although a cloned animal is genetically identical to the original animal , there is no guarantee that it will physically resemble the original animal.
Human cloning Purpose of cloning : 1) the production of babies for those such as infertile couples , single women , gays and couples whose children have died. 2) With cloning , doctors who perform plastic surgeries instead of using silicone ( and other materials which are foreign to the body ,will be able to manufacture bone , fat and connective tissue that matches the patient’s tissue exactly.
3)Each average person has eight defective genes inside his organism. These defective genes can make people sick. With human cloning technology it may be possible to ensure that humans will no longer suffer from these defective genes. For example , people who suffer from Liver or Kidney failure , with cloning scientists may will be able to clone livers for livers transplants and kidneys for kidney transplants.
Human cloning : The ethics 1)Physical harms from cloning : The methods used for cloning humans could endanger the developing individuals. Somatic cell nuclear transfer has not yet been refined and its long safety has not yet been proved. There are great possibilities of a series of illnesses associated with cloning.
2) The impact of human cloning on society and family : What would be the consequences the father-daughter relationship if the daughter and wife were genetically identical? Would a woman have a normal mother- daughter relationship with her clone ?
Religious issues with cloning Man is created in God’s image and likeness and he is unique , among all creations. There must be a creator : Human is Not God and can not decide over human life. Life should be valued and not treated like commodity , bought and sold.
My opinion No cloning because ………It is a violation against the nature. Nature always knows better than humans. Every human being and animal is unique and this variety makes our life so beautiful.