Cloning refers to the process of creating a genetically identical copy of an organism or cell. The two organisms or cells have the exact copy of the DNA, whether created artificially or naturally. Single-cell organisms do natural cloning—for example, bacterias, where they replicate an identical copy of themselves through asexual production. Twin babies of humans or any other mammals also fall in the category of natural cloning.
What are the different types of artificial cloning?
There are mainly three types of artificial cloning: reproductive cloning, gene cloning, and therapeutic cloning.
- Reproductive cloning- refers to cloning in which experts make a genetically identical copy of another human or animal. The cloned offspring has the same genetic information as the donor or parent.
- Gene cloning- refers to the process of cloning in which segments of a DNA of an animal or human are copied for research or other scientific work.
- Therapeutic cloning- refers to the process of human embryo cloning to extract stem cells that can be used to treat diseases or any other experiment.
Who is Dolly the sheep, and why is she important in the concept of cloning?
In 1966, Dolly was the first successful sheep cloned from a somatic cell. She was born at Roslin Institute in Edinburgh. Dolly is essential in the concept of cloning, as she was the first mammal who was born from cloning. Her birth opened up scope for further research and development on how an existing adult cell can help in creating identical genetic information into a new organism.
Advantages of Cloning:
- The extraction of stem cells from cloning opens up scope for the treatment of certain diseases.
- A better understanding of diseases caused by genes.
- Many animals can be preserved and reduce the possibilities of extinction.
- It helps in organ replacement by taking parts of a cell to treat the affected organ.
Disadvantages of Cloning:
- Cell mutation, which can cause more severe diseases.
- Ethical issues, many societies may not accept due to moral reasoning.
- Shorter life span
- The success rate is not much, for which it may not be a reliable process.
Cloning is one of the most controversial topics in today’s generation. It is considered unethical in many societies. However, the research and medical work are still going on to make it more successful. It can be a great option because of all its advantages, which are difficult to find in any other scientific method.