So what is cloning? Cloning is the process of naturally or artificially creating individuals with identical or nearly identical DNA. Cloning is a natural form of reproduction that has allowed life forms to spread for millions of years. Identical twins are just one of many examples of cloning!
How does it work?
Cloning works differently with different species, but some of the basic essential steps are fragmentation ,breaking apart a strand of DNA, ligation, gluing together the pieces of DNA in a sequence, transfection, inserting the DNA into cells and selection which is selecting the successful cells with the transfused pieces of DNA. In simple terms, cloningworks by taking a genetic part of an organism and recreating it in another place.
Dolly the Sheep
You've probably heard of Dolly the sheep, the first mammal cloned from an adult somatic sheep. She lived for 6 years as a clone and is considered to be the most famous sheep. Since she was created by SCNT, (somatic cell nuclear transfer) she was not a perfect copy. Dolly's embryo was formed by taking a cell from her biological mother and inserting it into a sheep ovum. This process took over 200 tries to be successful but once it was, the embryo placed in a sheep went through a normal pregnancy. Although she was born in 1996, nobody knew about her until 1997. Many animals since then have been cloned including tadpoles, zebrafish, sheep, monkeys, pigs, cattle, horses, rats, cats, mules and the list goes on.
There has never been a law passed in the US that prohibits cloning but there have been laws passed that indirectly forbid it. Human cloning does not refer to the natural conception of identical twins, human cloning is the reproduction of human cells and tissues. There are 2 types of human cloning, therapeutic and reproductive. Therapeutic cloning is cloning human cells for transplants and medicine whereas reproductive cloning involves making an entire being instead of specific cells. Although many scientists have no motive to clone humans as of right now, they are open to discussing regulation of cloning. In the future, cloning can help change the face of medicine, creating organs that match the person in need exactly so that they don't die waiting on the transplant list.
Cloning has been seen in many movies such as Jurassic Park, Alien Resurrection, Star Wars and so many others. Cloning has also been used in fiction books/movies to resurrect historical figures such as Adolf Hitler. People have wondered if clones would one day take over the world similarly as people believe that robots will take over. Cloning has its pros and cons but would you ever want to be cloned?