Describing the biological process of cloning and the contentions raised against it

The Ethics of Cloning Here I would like to present several different views on the ethics concerning cloning. Ethics Courtesy of the Roslin Institute Many ethical and moral concerns have arisen over the potential applications of the cloning technology. The technology is still in its infancy and in the meantime, society as a whole has time to contemplate which uses of the technology might be acceptable and which would not. The suddenness of the news of the cloning of the first adult animal caught almost all commentators by surprise and some suggested that we should have fully discussed the implications of our work before we started.

Describing the biological process of cloning and the contentions raised against it

Percent of Americans born between and surviving to ages 15 and 45 It might seem at first that selection due to differential fertility has been considerably reduced in industrial countries as a consequence of the reduction in the average number of children per family that has taken place.

However, this is not so. The intensity of fertility selection depends not on the mean number of children per family, but on the variance in the number of children per family.

It is clear why this should be so. Assume that all people of reproductive age marry and that all have exactly the same number of children. In this case, there would not be fertility selection whether couples all had very few or all had very many children.

Assume, on the other hand, that the mean number of children per family is low, but some families have no children at all or very few, whereas others have many. In this case, there would be considerable opportunity for selection—the genotypes of parents producing many children would increase in frequency at the expense of those having few or none.

Studies of human populations have shown that the opportunity for natural selection often increases as the mean number of children decreases. An extensive study published years ago showed that the index of opportunity for selection due to fertility was four times larger among United States women born in the 20th century, with an average of less than three children per woman, than among women in the Gold Coast of Africa or in rural Quebec, who had three times or more children on average Table 2 8 There is no evidence that natural selection due to fertility has decreased in modern human populations.

View popup Table 2. Mean number of children per family and index of opportunity for fertility selection If, in various human populations Natural selection may decrease in intensity in the future, but it will not disappear altogether.

As long as there is genetic variation and the carriers of some genotypes are more likely to reproduce than others, natural selection will continue operating in human populations. Cultural changes, such as the development of agriculture, migration from the country to the cities, environmental pollution, and many others, create new selective pressures.

Describing the biological process of cloning and the contentions raised against it

The pressures of city life are partly responsible for the high incidence of mental disorders in certain human societies. The point to bear in mind is that human environments are changing faster than ever owing precisely to the accelerating rate of cultural change, and environmental changes create new selective pressures, thus fueling biological evolution.

Natural selection is the process of differential reproduction of alternative genetic variants. In terms of single genes, variation occurs when two or more alleles are present in the population at a given gene locus. How much genetic variation exists in the current human population? The two genomes that we inherit from each parent are estimated to differ at about one or two nucleotides per thousand.

The human genome consists of somewhat more than 3 billion nucleotides Thus, about 3—6 million nucleotides are different between the two genomes of each human individual, which is a lot of genetic polymorphism.


Moreover, the process of mutation introduces new variation in any population every generation. Thus, every human has about 60 new mutations 30 in each genome that were not present in the parents.

If we consider the total human population, that is 60 mutations per person multiplied by 7 billion people, which is about billion new mutations per generation that are added to the preexisting 3—6 million polymorphic nucleotides per individual.

That is a lot of mutations, even if many are redundant. Moreover, we must remember that the polymorphisms that count for natural selection are those that impact the probability of survival and reproduction of their carriers.

Genetic Disorders More than 2, human diseases and abnormalities that have a genetic causation have been identified in the human population.The identity argument is not an argument against cloning; rather it is an argument against placing unnecessary and unwarranted pressure on an individual, regardless of how they were conceived.

Cloning is a threat to human diversity. Cloning is the process of creating genetically identical copies of biological matter. Learn about natural clones, cloning methods, and more. Cloning is the process of creating genetically identical copies of biological matter.

Learn about natural clones, cloning methods, and more. Arguments for and Against Embryonic Stem Cell Research. Cloning is the process of creating genetically identical copies of biological matter.

This may include genes, cells, tissues or entire organisms.. Natural Clones. Some organisms generate clones naturally through asexual reproduction. Plants, algae, fungi, and protozoa produce spores that develop into new individuals that are genetically identical to the parent organism.

This assessment activity requires students to collect and process data and/or information to report on a biological issue on which people hold different opinions or viewpoints. The activity is a generic guide to the assessment process for this standard and is not intended for use in its current form.

Rather than argue for grouping cloning with one technology or another, I wish to suggest that we can best understand the significance of the cloning process by comparing it with these other technologies, and thus broadening the debate.

Cloning is the artificial process of producing genetically identical organism in laboratory conditions by replicating the genes present within a DNA molecule With the help of cloning many replicas of the same plant or animal species can be created for a certain purpose.

Project MUSE - An Argument Against Cloning