9 Central Advantages and Disadvantages of Cloning
Cloning is something that has been studied for quite some time. Plants, animals, and even humans all have the ability to be cloned with the current technology that has been developed. Cloning is when a single cell is taken from an organism, and used to create an entirely new copy of that organism. It has come under much debate because of the ethical and moral issues that surround the subject. The true benefits and consequences are different depending on what is being cloned, so let’s take a look at the big picture of cloning.
The Advantages of Cloning
1. Hope for Endangered Species
One of the biggest pulls for animal cloning has to do with endangered species. There are currently well over 20 thousand different types of animals on the endangered list, which has scientists thinking, what if we clone them? Cloning the surviving animals would effectively save the species entirely.
2. Medical Benefits
Another large benefit that has been obtained through the use of cloning is in the medical world. The research and process of cloning has helped scientists to greatly understand the way that our DNA and genes are made up, which allows them to develop better treatments and medicines. Another medical benefit is the idea of organ harvesting. People that are on organ transplant waiting lists could have an organ cloned and grew for them instead of having to wait for a donor.
3. Bring Back Extinct Animals And Plants
Thousands upon thousands of animals and plant species have gone extinct through out history. Using cloning, it would be possible to bring these back to life. Why it would only work with organisms that we have found samples of, such as petrified dinosaurs, it is still an amazing probability.
4. More Nutritious Food
Scientists have managed to successfully crate plants and animals that have a higher nutritional value. This was done with the use of genetic engineering. Using cloning, we can spread these traits extremely quickly through our food supplies.
5. Solve The Infertility Problem
When it comes to cloning humans, huge debates have surfaced. One of the biggest advertised pros of human cloning is using it as a way to eliminate the fertility problem. Many couples cannot conceive a child naturally due to fertility issues. Cloning would allow them to have a child that is biological to them both.
The Disadvantages of Cloning
1. Ethical Dilemmas
The biggest problem that arises when talking about cloning is an ethical one. Many religions do not believe that man should have a hand at all in the creation of life, let alone duplicating life that has already been made. The term “playing God” is often used to describe the practice of cloning. Another problem that would likely arise if we began to clone humans is a social divide. People would view cloned humans as lesser people.
2. Development of New Disease
There are many unknowns with cloning, including how they will change and react over a long period of time. There is a large possibility for gene and DNA mutations that could create new diseases and illnesses that non cloned humans are not familiar with. Some people even believe that cloning humans will cause a plague that will wipe us out.
3. High Cost, Low Success
The equipment and knowledge that is needed to clone a plant, animal, or human is extremely expensive. All of these costs seem to be unjustified when you take a look at the success rate of cloning. At a low 3 percent, many people believe that the risks involved in cloning greatly outweigh the benefits that would be enjoyed if it happened to be a success.
4. A Lack of Diversity
If everyone just decided to start cloning themselves, then individuality and diversity would begin to dwindle among the population. People would only want to have children with the most desired characteristics, and with cloning this would be possible. Everyone would start to look the same and genes would not have a chance to evolve over time.