Kamis, 22 Mei 2008

Pet Cloning Goes Commercial

A California biotech company called BioArts plans to hold a public auction to clone five dogs. The scientist involved in the actual cloning will be the South Korean researcher who cloned Snuppy, the male Afghan hound pictured in Human Biology, 5th ed. (p. 418), and who later claimed (fraudulently) to have cloned human embryos.

The auction will be held July 5th through 9th online, with bidding to start at $100,000. The company promises the buyer a puppy that resembles the original dog, guaranteed healthy for a year. The company says that the success rate with cloning dogs has improved to the point that 25% of all embryo transfers now result in a puppy, and that the puppy survival rate is 80%.

Human cloning can’t be far behind. The sticking point is the success rate and the health of the clone – do we really think that a survival rate on the order of 80% would be worth the risk? No one knows the long-term health risks.

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