Sunday, April 26
Posted by Brittany Ballard at 8:26 PM
This is a video I came across on CNN.com. According to this, a doctor recently used cloned embryos and transferred them into 4 different women in the hopes that they would result in pregnancies. I find this truly unbelievable…first, that we actually have the technology to do this. And second, because there are people that want to have their children be clones of themselves. Personally, I would have a difficult time with the concept of having a child that would actually be a replication of me. It just seems weird. But on a more general note, with a “breakthrough” like this it seems like there are more negative side effects than positive. They state that by cloning the embryos and implanting them, they can provide a couple with “biological offspring”. Don’t we already have the technology to do this without cloning? A lot of time and money are going into this area of study even though there is an alternative that is already being used. In vitro fertilization is one option that has been used for decades now and the procedure is far less risky compared to cloning. The main concern with cloning is that there is a higher chance of the child having birth defects. So, is there a rational reason for this doctor to clone a human? In my opinion, the reason for cloning in this case is not substantial since there are alternatives already available, and the procedure should not have gone forward.
This video also states that there are doctors that clone embryos for the use of stem cells. These stem cells are used only for medical research. But there are other methods of obtaining stem cells for research that are “natural”, such as collecting umbilical cord stem cells after a child is born. The lines that have been drawn in the cloning debate seem blurred. How is it acceptable for embryos to be cloned for the use of stem cell research, but not for reproductive purposes? It would seem that once an embryo has been cloned, even for the use of stem cell research, it would be difficult to stop the eventual reproduction of a human being. Both purposes come from the initial act of cloning, so how can the two be distinguished?
The topic of cloning is very controversial and there are many conflicting opinions on the matter. According to the video, the doctor involved believes that his team will have successfully cloned a baby within two years. If we haven’t been able to resolve the issues involved with this topic by now, how will we resolve them in two more years?