Hey guys, welcome to this Mometrix video over genetic cloning. In our last video we looked at Genes and Alleles, which will help us segue all the information we learned there so that we can better understand cloning.
So, for something to be considered a clone, it must be an exact genetic copy of an organism.
A clone could appear naturally or could be concocted in a laboratory. Many organisms like various bacteria, and even some plants produce offspring that are exact genetic copies of the parent through a process called asexual reproduction. Today’s technology, now, also has the ability to produce clones. Within the field of genetic cloning, there are actually three different types of cloning: therapeutic cloning, reproductive cloning, and gene cloning.
- Therapeutic cloning is when numerous clones of a specific cell are produced in order to treat a disease.
- Reproductive cloning is when an exact genetic copy of an organism is made of an organism.
- Gene cloning is when a portion of external DNA is placed inside a vector that can be replicated by the host cell – you may have also heard this referred to as recombinant DNA technology.
There are four primary steps within the genetic cloning process:
- Restriction enzymes are used to sever and remove the desired portion of DNA from a specific organism.
- The portion of DNA that was removed is then placed into a vector, and the two endings of the DNA are connected to the vector by a process called ligation.
- The vector, now containing the DNA from the source organism, is placed within a host cell. This process is referred to as transformation. The vector DNA is copied multiple times by the host cell.
- Finally, the vector DNA must be separated from the DNA of the host cell, and then it must be cleaned up and purified.
Scientists and researchers have been enamored with the idea of cloning over the last 50 years. Many, many experiments have been orchestrated, and diverse methods have been tried on various kinds of animals. Genetically identical mice were created, in 1979. It was done by splitting the embryos of mice in a concealed test tube to then be inserted into the wombs’ of the female mice.
Later, other animals like cattle, sheep, cats, deer, dogs, horses, as well as others, were cloned by taking a somatic cell from an adult animal.
The big question though is has a human been cloned. No. And if you’ve heard otherwise, I’m sorry, but that’s fake news. There have however been many claims to have cloned a human, but no actual evidence to support it.
So what’s the purpose of cloning animals?
The cloning of animals does have some benefits. For example, scientists have cloned sheep that have been genetically modified to produce milk, which contain a protein that is vital in humans for blood clotting. Another benefit to reproductive cloning is to test the effectiveness of drugs and various treatment methods.
I hope that this video over genetic cloning was helpful to you, be sure to check out our next video in the series over codons. If you like this video then be sure to give us a thumbs up and subscribe to our channel for future videos, happy studying guys.