Improving the food supply. Cloning can help make plants stronger and more resistent to diseases, while being able to produce more. The same could happen to farm animals as well where diseases such as foot and mouth disease could be originated. So cloning can provide a solution to the world’s problem of short food supply, and grow the population, while lowering the death rate. 2. Best Animals Programs are underway to clone agricultural animals, such as cattle and pigs, that are efficient producers of high-quality milk or meat. A group of researchers at Utah State University led by Dr. Ken White, Dean of College
of Agriculture & Applied Science, have been able to clone steer from slaughterhouse carcasses. Their aim isn't to produce animals for consumption—cloning is far more labor-intensive and expensive than conventional breeding methods. Instead, they want to use these animals as breeding stock. The important thing to know about beef cattle is that the quality and yield of their meat can be assessed only after they are slaughtered. And male animals are routinely neutered when they're a few days old. That is, their testes are removed, so they are unable to make sperm. But cells from a high-quality carcass can be cloned, giving rise to an animal that is able, though conventional breeding methods, to pass its superior genes to its offspring. Scientists have also cloned mules, a reproductively sterile hybrid of a male donkey and a female horse; dairy cows; and horses. One gelded racing horse, a male whose testes have been removed, has a clone that is available for breeding. Some of the cloned cows produce about twice as much milk as the average producer. And a cloned racing mule is ranked among the best in the world. Cloning animals is a reliable way of maintaining high quality livestock to supply our nutritional needs. Identifying and reproducing superior livestock genetics ensures that herds are maintained at the highest quality possible. Page 3 of 6 Animal cloning offers great benefits to consumers, farmers, and endangered species: Cloning allows farmers and ranchers to accelerate the reproduction of their most productive livestock in order to better produce safe and healthy food. Cloning reproduces the healthiest animals, thus minimizing the use of antibiotics, growth hormones and other chemicals. Cloning can be used to protect endangered species. For example, in China, panda cells are being kept on reserve should this species' numbers be threatened by extinction. You might have seen the Jurassic Park movies. In the original feature film, based on the Michael Crichton novel, scientists use DNA preserved for tens of millions of years to
clone dinosaurs. They run into trouble, however, when they realize that the cloned creatures were smarter and fiercer than expected. Could we really clone dinosaurs? In theory? Yes. You would need: A well-preserved source of DNA from the extinct dinosaur, and A closely related species, currently living, that could serve as an egg donor and surrogate mother.
- Fall '15
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