Human Cloning And Stem-Cell Research

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Human Cloning and Stem-Cell Research:

In the past several years, cloning has been a rising concern on the minds of the medical and bioethics community. In February of 1997, the world learned of the first successful cloning of a mammal, a sheep named Dolly. Since then, the idea of cloning as a result of cloning to produce children or as a result of cloning for biomedical research has become an all too real possibility. The issue has become so prevalent that in 2001, President George W. Bush created the Council on Bioethics specifically to inform him on any issues or advancements made in the field of cloning and stem cell research.

One eventual outcome of human cloning could be the ability of parents to, essentially, build their child by determining its genetic make-up. Instead of leaving children's characteristics up to chance, parents could choose their children's hair color, eye color, and skin color, effectively moving the institution of sexual reproduction from procreation to architecture. While this may sound frightening, genetic research has far more advantages than downfalls. With recent advancements in the mapping of the human genome, it will soon be possible to identify particular strings of DNA which may cause diseases like cancer or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Commonly known as ALS or Lou Gehrig's Disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis is a neurodegenerative disease that attacks nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. Through stem-cell research, the affected neurons could be regenerated or replaced. If these diseases are identified and isolated before the birth of a child with the potential of developing them, the world as we know it could be changed for the better.(ALSA)

Stem cells, as defined by SerVass, are "the most immature primordial cells in the body". Theoretically, stem cells have the ability to grow into any kind of cell or organ in the body... Continue Reading