On Bioethics

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Cloning

LEADING BIOETHICIST SUPPORTS REPRODUCTIVE CLONING

The co-editor of one of the world’s leading bioethics journals, Bioethics, has stated that he supports reproductive cloning. Writing in his blog, Udo Schuklenk, of Glasgow Caledonian University, says that “there are no serious reasons against reproductive cloning”.

“It would simply give a few hundred or a few thousand people worldwide another means of non-sexual reproduction (eg, infertile couples for whom IVF failed could access cloning to have a genetically linked child). In fact, there could be a good medical reason for this. What if a loving couple with a desire to have their own genetically linked child runs a serious risk of passing a genetic illness on to their offspring? Reproductive cloning would… eliminate that risk by using only the healthy parent’s genetic material. Good news all round, I would think.”

However, Dr Schuklenk is careful to point out that reproductive cloning is hardly a top research priority at the moment, with diseases like TB, malaria and AIDS still afflicting millions. He even finds it a “pre-occupation with having our ‘own’ genetically linked kids” “obscene”. However, he cannot see anything wrong with it — if it ever becomes a possibility. ~ Udo Schuklenk’s Ethx Blog, Mar 16