Cloned monkeys spur warnings against human cloning
|Image Source: Institute of Neuroscience of Chinese Academy of Sciences|
By David Roach - Posted at Baptist Press:
SHANGHAI (BP) -- The first-ever primates cloned through a technique that produced Dolly the sheep have been cited by Christian bioethicists as a potentially valuable development in animal research. But they warned that two monkeys engineered by Chinese researchers must not become a step toward cloning humans.
The cloning method used by the Chinese scientists "should not become a test case for the perfection of human cloning techniques," said Raymond Johnson, a Pennsylvania pastor who received a financial award from Trinity International University last year to help him study the relationship between Christianity and science.
"While lauded as a valuable scientific breakthrough," Johnson, pastor of The Journey Church in West Chester, Pa., told Baptist Press, "even a quiet inference fortified by this experiment that human life is merely the result of cellular manipulation brings our culture ever closer to the slippery slope of crucial ethical and eugenic dilemmas."
Researchers from the Chinese Academy of Sciences Institute of Neuroscience announced in a Jan. 24 article for the journal Cell that they produced two genetically-identical long-tailed macaque monkeys using a scientific technique known as somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT).
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