The Advantages of Cloning over Sexual Reproduction
There is a reason why every day, hundreds of millions of babies are born all over the world. And that can be attributed to reproduction. The most common method of reproduction is called the sexual reproduction, and has been the only known reproduction method until a little over a few years back.
Sexual Reproduction is a method which involves the union of the ovum, which is the female gamete, and the spermatozoon commonly known as the male gamete.
This forms a potential offspring, which is called a zygote. A lot of processes happen during the sexual reproduction, such as fertilization and meiosis.
For a long time, sexual reproduction has been the only method known to mankind- that is, until cloning was born. Cloning comes from the word clone which means to make a multiple identical copies of something, and in this case, a gene. The process of cloning starts from extracting a DNA from a host cell (or the parent), and implanting in another cell, for a new function.
This will result to a new human identical to the parent with, in fact, features that the parent would like his or her children to have.
However, cloning is a technology that has never been considered, even given just a second thought for approval by the people, except for scientists themselves. In fact, the first successful cloning which was done on sheep became very controversial, as a lot of people did not approve of practicing such technology, as shortly after the first cloning, there were rallies against human cloning. In short, cloning was never given a chance to prove its effectiveness and benefits to human kind, which is what this paper aims to do.
Disadvantages of Sexual Reproduction
Although it is still the method used nowadays, Sexual reproduction still has its own flaws. In fact, it has a lot. However, the reason why people still use the method for production is because it is the only method of reproduction they know of and are familiar with. And this is the main reason why the disadvantages have been disregarded most of the time.
Sexually Transmitted Diseases are at the top of the list. Of course, intercourse is the only way to sexually reproduce. And often times, one of the partners have STDs, and the man and the woman are not even aware of it. Sexually Transmitted Diseases can go from minor to lethal if not taken cared of and this is the reason why sex has become dangerous.
Hepatitis A, B and C, Human Immunodeficiency Virus also known as HIV or Aids, Crabs louse and Scabies are only some of the diseases that can be acquired through sexual contact. The said diseases are not mild. These are serious infections that can be transmitted to other people as well, and can even affect the offspring.
Another disadvantage of sexual reproduction is the risk and the burden it gives to women. Of course, we all know that carrying a child and giving birth is not an easy task, although we can only really find out if we have experienced it firsthand.
As hard as it already is, giving birth can very much risk a woman’s life as well. And during sex, most burdens goes to the female, also referred to as the two-fold costs of sex (Science Daily 2006).
This disadvantage may appeal more to the women, and less of the men. However, if this is how much sexual reproduction would cost, then there must be some other way that would be less dangerous, which will be discussed later on.
Another disadvantage to sexual reproduction is that, during “manual reproduction”, some genes of the man and the woman are combined; some are kept, some are eliminated to form one unique offspring. However, as big the chances are of having normal children, there is also a big chance of producing an offspring with abnormalities, this is because in average, a person carries 8 genes which are defective.
This only shows that such genes can easily be copied to the DNA of their offspring. Down’s syndrome, Tay Sach’s disease and Turner Syndrome are only a few of the sicknesses that an offspring might get right at the time of his or her birth if something goes wrong. This cannot be cured and will affect the offspring for the rest of his or her life.
According to Ricardo Azevedo, in order for such illnesses to vanish, two things must take place; first, “the production rate of harmful mutations must be relatively high”, as the offspring will not acquire one or more harmful mutations from his or her parents. The next is that such mutations should “interact in a special way”. This way is called the negative epistasis, as the more harmful mutations there are, the more you get “worse off” (Science Daily 2006).
Studies on such harmful and negative processes are yet to be made as such illnesses are all by chance, which is what makes sexual reproduction very dangerous, as everything is all purely by chance.
One more disadvantage of sexual reproduction is that, not all women are capable to carry and give birth to a child. Only 50% of the female population are given the ability to gestate. Which makes the other half unable to have offspring of their own.
There are now a lot of single women who would love to have children of their own, and this is quite impossible with sexual reproduction because there is a need for a partner. And this is another disadvantage to such method. Even married women experience this as some have husbands who are infertile or simply cannot contribute to the production of an offspring, as there are times when the nucleus of the male sex cell (sperm cell) does not fuse with the female sex cell (egg cell). There are also times when fertilization cannot take place, and couples would have to try and try, this is another disadvantage as again, everything is by chance, and there are a lot of times when there is no offspring formed (Whatani 2008).
Advantages of Cloning
As discussed earlier, there are a lot of disadvantages to sexual reproduction and as mentioned, there must be some other way to reproduce, and one alternative to that is cloning. Although sexual reproduction is the conventional way, cloning has a lot of benefits to offer which might outweigh the benefits of the usual method of reproduction.
The first two things that come to people’s minds when they hear the word cloning are genetic sicknesses and infertility. As discussed earlier, there are some couples who are infertile, it may be the woman or the man, but either way, they are unable to produce an offspring. This is where cloning could work best; as such method can help couples produce one.
While it is true that couples who have infertility problems can always adopt, having a child they can call their own is totally different. Cloning does not require mothers to bear foetuses in their womb. And although a lot of people do not consider this as having children of their own, it is the other way around, as genes will be taken from the parent/s. So the offspring will still look like the parent/s as the traits will be taken from their own.
There are some single individuals who would do anything to have a child of their own. However, with sexual reproduction, it is quite impossible to do it alone. But with cloning, it is totally possible as only one parent is needed as a gene donor.
Genetic illnesses are very common nowadays. It is still incurable nowadays, and one reason behind that is because cloning is not yet accepted by many up to now. Cloning can create a human being that has been genetically perfected into the person that their parents want them to be.
Before one child can even be born, parents can eliminate the chances of their offspring have genetic sicknesses such as those mentioned earlier. This will ensure a better health for the child, thus giving a better life for their child in the long run. The saying “health is wealth” is true and applies to every human kind and in this case, even before a child is born. Cloning can give the assurance that children will have the childhood that they deserve through making sure that they are healthy when they are born (Whatani 2008).
If one person would need a donor for one part, cloning could provide the solution to such problem. The technology of cloning can create different parts for donation (The Advantages of Cloning n.d). Livers, kidneys, bone marrows and other body parts can now be genetically created to fit the person in need. This is an advantage from the normal organ donations because first of all, it is faster as there is no need to wait for a donor to die, or want to give up a part of their body.
The second reason is that it will eliminate the complications of having to look for a match donor. Although there are donors, there are still tests that they would need to go through before the parts are transferred to another body. This will make the whole process a lot longer because most of the time, the available body part does not match the receiver’s body. Cloning will make this process more convenient and quicker, which can even become a matter of life and death.
Some illnesses that have been incurable for years can now be cured through the help of cloning and transplants. Leukaemia can now be cured through bone marrow transplants; liver cancer does not have to be a problem anymore as sick people can get parts without having to be on a donors list.
Cystic fibrosis would not also be trouble anymore as scientists will be able to find therapy that can cure such illness. There is also a big possibility that cancer will be gone for a long time as scientists will be able to understand the sickness, where they come from and find different and effective ways of curing and preventing it, if only cloning would be approved.
There is a saying that prevention is better than cure. Well, it can be applied to cloning as well. Genetic illnesses can be avoided if cloning were the method used for production. Parents who want their offspring cloned can choose the good genes that they want in their offspring. Any trait that they would want to see in their child can all be put together through cloning. Genetically modifying humans is now possible through this technology, which will work to the benefits of a lot of people.
Another advantage of cloning is that, the results come out fast, because in a short period of time, signs of whether an offspring was formed or not will be seen. The main reason for this is that there is no fertilization that takes place in cloning.
Also, cloning will give certain results because there are less methods or steps to be followed, which means there is not a lot of room for errors. Cloning is life changing in this aspect, because there is an opportunity to change certain aspects of a human (Whatani 2008).
To conclude all the advantages of cloning, it is evident that cloning can change a lot of lives if given the chance and opportunity to prove itself. This technology has been created for a reason, and that is to change what used to be unchangeable. It can give the opportunity to have children; healthy children for that matter. And it can even find different cures for illnesses that have left doctors clueless for years now, which is why cloning can be very beneficial to mankind.
Advantages of Sexual Reproduction
Although it has been considered as a disadvantage, sometimes, having two parents involved becomes an advantage, because it can make both parents feel involved and somehow embrace their offspring.
Evolution is one big factor why sexual reproduction is advantageous. If both parents are involved in reproduction, then it is more likely that evolution will happen. If this becomes the case, there are more chances that their offspring would be able to adapt to his or her surroundings.
Sexual Reproduction allows the offspring to adapt easier to changing environments. This is another advantage of such method; because it will help the offspring live in any changing situation and place if he or she has been sexually reproduced as this allows greater genetic variation. Most of the time, survival of the fittest is the case in this life, which is why adaptation is very important in living.
Procreation is more likely to happen if both parents are involved. This is of course the natural method of reproduction. And as it is the natural, the first, and the most common method used today, people are more likely to support it, which becomes one of its advantages over cloning.
Another advantage of sexual reproduction is the assurance of a unique offspring to be formed by the parents. As it is natural, human beings do not have a say in how their children should look like, unlike cloning, wherein genes can be modified and children can look the way
One more pro of sexual reproduction is that it promotes meiotic and chromosomal recombination. As a matter of fact, recombination is still present in species that do not mate or are infertile. DNA repair happens through sexual reproduction. In fact, it is even said that this is the main function of such reproduction method, which is why it is also good to reproduce sexually.
However, after all these advantages have been mentioned, it still does not mean that it outweighs the reproduction method of cloning. Although the advantages above are very important, cloning still brings more to the table, as discussed earlier.
Disadvantages of Cloning
There are not a lot of scientific reasons why cloning should not be approved and used. Its disadvantages play more on the ethical side, rather than the scientific; as technically, cloning is a technology that works more to the benefit of many. However, it is still proper to discuss such disadvantages to create awareness and for comparison purposes.
The first disadvantage to cloning will always be related with God and religion. Most people believe that God created mankind. If not God, then there is always the belief that someone superior created humans and that people should not create humans themselves.
Most of the time, it is called “Playing God”, because if humans can create humans, then there will be no more “need” for God and that the concept of having a supreme being will be lost. Respect to God is more of the term that most people use.
Tying up with religion is the concept of homosexuality, as most religions and entities are against homosexuals. And cloning will only make it possible for homosexuals to have their own children. If cloning were to be approved and used as a method of reproduction, the concept of husband and wife and man and woman would be lost and this again is tied up with the concepts and beliefs of the different religions (Reasons For and Against Human Cloning. n.d).
A lot of people are against cloning because there is a possibility for the technology to be used for different forms of slavery. It is very possible that humans who are very strong but are not very smart can be created through cloning. This, however, is not the main reason why cloning was invented anyways (Reasons For and Against Human Cloning. n.d).
One more disadvantage of cloning is that embryos die during the process of trying out and experimenting for the perfection of the process. A lot of people are still debating whether this is considered as murder because some consider embryos to have life already, while some believe otherwise.
Scientists defend the idea of killing embryos in the process because if only this technology will be allowed to operate, then it is more likely that fewer embryos will be killed as scientists and other experts perfect this method (Reasons For and Against Human Cloning. n.d).
Losing the uniqueness of each individual may be at risk as well. As one advantage of cloning is that parents can decide how their child will look like, it becomes a disadvantage as well, because parents can decide to have all their children look alike. The sense of individuality will more likely be lost if this becomes the case.
Cloning can also be used for deceiving people and can even be used for breaking the law. A copy of each person can be created for a specific reason and sometimes, such reasons are not for the benefit of mankind but for the benefit of the individual. Such reasons might become dangerous in the future, and this becomes a disadvantage of cloning.
The last disadvantage of cloning is the fear of the results of such method will not have their rights as individual citizens because of the idea that they are just copied off of someone. A lot of debates are still going on whether or not this is true, as again, this ties up with the idea of individuality.
For years now, sexual reproduction has been the only method known to mankind. It has become conventional and has become very convenient for humans to use. It can be concluded that humans have become comfortable with this method which is why it is harder to bring something new to the table, thus making it harder to accept the new method of cloning.
Cloning has a lot of benefits to offer to the world. It can produce some things that have been unimaginable for the last few centuries. However, it cannot be completely proven yet as it has not been approved by governments and the whole world.
Sexual reproduction does have a lot of advantages. However, the advantages of cloning outweigh them. And cloning does have its own flaws; however they are more on the moral aspect.
And such disadvantages are not enough to outweigh the positive effects of the technology. Disadvantages of sexual reproduction are too much to be erased by its own advantages and because of that, cloning has a head start.
As the advantages of cloning have been discussed, it is evident that cloning will go far, especially in the medical field. And there is nothing wrong with using the sexual reproduction method. However, if given the chance to improve in one area, people should be open to change.
Cloning will not totally change everything, but will only help improve the aspects of reproduction. People will no longer wait for a long time to have a new body part to live, children will not suffer from various diseases that have been transmitted from them genetically, and life will become much easier if cloning were to be approved and supported by people.
. If the technology of cloning will be given a chance to prove itself, lives can be changed.
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Cite this The Advantages of Cloning over Sexual Reproduction
The Advantages of Cloning over Sexual Reproduction. (2016, Oct 02). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/the-advantages-of-cloning-over-sexual-reproduction/