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The cloning of humans may soon be a reality The recent announcement of a sheep and calf cloned using this technique has sparked much controversy in the modern world The ethical legal and moral aspects of cloning must be addressed by governments quickly and its implications must be taken into careful consideration for the future of mankind in general On February 23 1997 Ian Wilmut a Scottish scientist and his colleagues at the Roslin Institute announced the successful cloning of a sheep from a cell from the body of another sheep - without the aid of sexual reproduction Dolly the sheep produced is the creation of a new individual genetically identical to an existing mammal - a delayed genetic twin This process was simply an extension of research in genetics that has been flourishing for several decades For the past ten years scientists have methodically cloned sheep and cows from embryo cells but the cloning procedure used to generate Dolly was quite unique The technique used to produce this novel sheep involved the use of a single somatic cell The cloning of Dolly was the first successful experiment using the nucleus of a somatic cell from an adult animal to clone an animal that matured to a fully developed state The basis of this experiment involved the obtaining of individual cells from the udder of an adult ewe The cells were then cultured in a laboratory and allowed to multiply Nutrients being fed to the cultured cells were then reduced in order to stop their growth The lack of nutrients forced the cells into a state of dormancy so that they became ready to stop acting like udder cells and began acting like embryo cells The nucleus of the now dormant udder cells was then removed and transferred to unfertilized sheep egg cells which had their original nucleus removed The egg with the new nucleus was then implanted into a surrogate mother
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