More Cloning Controversy is Brewing

The recent announcement about the first cloning of a human embryo has many people concerned. Many agree this kind of research could lead to medical breakthroughs, but at what price? There are big moral and ethical questions about creating the beginnings of a human being, even though the end results could help cure a number of diseases, including Parkinson's and heart disease.

Dr. William Langston, the founder of the nationally renowned Parkinson's Institute in California is guarded but hopeful about the breakthrough in cloning human embryos. In the future, it could be a turning point for Parkinson's patients like Harry Weisenburger. Dr. Langston says, "The dream is with this approach is someone could go in, donate DNA, go back six months later and have a fully grown part to replace one missing in their own body for Parkinson's disease." In the moderate stages of Parkinson's, Weisenburger welcomes any advances, preliminary or not. He says, "I wouldn't want to criticize anyone really over looking science."

There are plenty of critics, like Dr. Margaret McClean a bio-ethics expert at Santa Clara University in California. She says there are moral and religious arguments over treating human beings as a means to an end. "People who believe that there is protectable human life in that dish
will say you cannot use this entity in order to create tissues for transplants, even though that's a worthy goal," McClean says. The House has already passed a bill banning any kind of cloning, and the President is against it too. The Senate is expected to vote on it in January.