Will We Clone Humans?
It’s the twenty-first century, and it’s been over 20 years since Dolly the sheep was cloned, so why can’t I have an army of mini-me’s?
You’d think that Dolly the sheep was only the first step and that that step would be followed by rapid development in the science of cloning.
Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case. Today, you’ll learn why.
Prepare to be disappointed, because that army of minions probably won’t be happening anytime soon—if ever.
How Does Cloning Work?
To explain it simply, cloning is taking a genetic part from one organism and recreating it elsewhere.
Dolly the sheep was cloned by somatic cell nuclear transfer.
In this process, you take the DNA from a somatic cell, such as a skin cell, and put it into an egg cell after the nucleus of the egg cell has been removed.
However, while that process wasn’t too difficult on sheep, it’s quite challenging on other species.
That’s not to say it hasn’t been done on other species because it has. Scientists have cloned sheep, mice, cows, and cats.
Why Aren’t There Human Clones?
There are multiple reasons human clones haven’t happened yet, and might not ever happen.
Firstly, cloning isn’t as easy as it seems. While taking the DNA out of one cell and putting it in another might not seem that hard, it is.
DNA is really, really tiny. Things can go wrong at any step during the process of taking the DNA out of one cell and putting it in another.
Another reason cloning humans might never happen is for ethical reasons.
Before we can clone humans successfully, there will have to be many failed experiments. We don’t want to risk multiple miscarriages, stillborn babies, and deformed infants.
Also, to invest hundreds of thousands of dollars to research cloning, there has to a commercial motive. Is there a way to make money from cloning?
You might think, “Of course there is. Who wouldn’t want a clone of themselves?”
But the truth is, the pharmaceutical industries immediately declared that they have no interest in human cloning. Also, the United Nations General Assembly banned all forms of human cloning in 2005.
Of course, there have been claims of successful human cloning. One of the claims was made by The Raelians who claimed that they successfully gave birth to the first cloned human on 26th of December 2002. However, the claim was never proven. Also, an Italian gynecologist named Severino Antinori claims that he successfully cloned 3 babies in 2000. He said they are healthy and living in Eastern Europe”.