Cloning

An experiment always thought impossible was the ability to recreate life by sculpting DNA. However, it is in fact possible thanks to cloning. The following paragraphs will explain the first cloning, how cloning works, and why or why not it could be beneficial to us today.

The start of cloning

In 1935, Hans Spemann won the Nobel prize for physiology and medicine. He won it because he discovered the effect now known as embryonic induction. This is the process in which a group of cells directs the development of another group of cells. In 1924, he and his student performed a nuclear transfer of somatic cells using amphibian embryos. These were the first steps of cloning.

How does cloning work?

DNA cloning contains four steps. First is fragmentation. This is the process of breaking the DNA strand. Next is ligation, which is the process of gluing the DNA strands into the desired places. Third is transfection, which inserts the new DNA strands into the cells. The last step, selection, is the process of selecting the successfully transferred cells in the new DNA.

Cloning and endangered species

As we know, there are many endangered species soon to become extinct. If we want these species to stay alive, cloning could be a viable solution. If we clone them before it’s too late, we could have enough of the species to reproduce so they don’t disappear.

Dolly the sheep

On July 5th 1996, cloning took a huge step with Dolly the sheep, the first successfully cloned mammal. She was cloned by Keith Campbell and Ian Wilmut in the University of Edinburgh. Dolly had three mothers, one providing the egg, one providing the DNA and the other carrying the cloned embryo. Sadly, Dolly died on February 14th, 2003. However, she will never be forgotten in the world of cloning.