Sunday, April 26

Possibility of Human Cloning

This is a video I came across on 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?


  1. Human cloning is a difficult topic to tackle because there are many ethical issues that could be addressed. But I would like to question what this doctor hopes to accomplish by this research. The video leads you to believe that he is doing this to help infertile couples, but aren’t their better way to accomplish this? I have no real scientific background, but I don’t understand how cloning humans could help unfertile couples become fertile. This doesn’t seem like the Doctor’s true reason for conducting this research.

    The video this brings up a good point of how much of the undeveloped world has little to no regulation covering human cloning. We could take this as an early indicator that these issues need to be addressed not in the near future, but now. Scientist are conducting this research now and if we feel that this research should be stopped or regulated we need to do so, now.

  2. I have to agree with Alex on this one. It is hard to formulate a plausible argument for human cloning. It seems to be one of those subjects that is best left untouched because of the obvious ethical issues that immediately arise from the discussion of human cloning.

    I also tend to agree that international regulation needs to occur soon. This issue is so controversial that I believe that universal regulation is a necessity in order to maintain an ethical society.

  3. Like Alex and Casey, I found this cloning issue very interesting. This doctor is getting away with actually transplanting these embryos into women, which brings up the point of how was this even done in the first place/regulated? I believe in the last part of the program they said the doctor didn't even do it in Europe, which is even more scary because like Alex said, things aren't happening to stop this. I just think so many other things could be done to help infertile women and also help so many other dire needs with countries, such as diseases like malaria. I really don't see how cloning people would be beneficial to our society. If you analyze it sort of like our group on Human Enhancement, you must think how this type of cloning will affect future generations. This issue needs to definitely be brought up with all countries and determine a medium, of what is allowed/not allowed.


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