FILLING THE GAPS IN THE RISKS VS. BENEFITS OF MAMMALIAN ADULT-CELL CLONING: TAKING BERNARD ROLLIN'S PHILOSOPHY ITS NEXT STEP


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Abstract

A critique is made of Bernard Rollin's examination of the ethics of cloning adult mammalian cells. The primary concern is less to propound an anticloning or procloning position than to call for full exploration of the ethical complexities before a rush to judgment is made. Indeed, the ethical examination in question rushes toward an ethical position in such a way that does not appear consistent with Rollin's usual methodology. By extending this methodology – which entails full weighing of benefits and costs – it becomes apparent that there are real potential risks to this type of cloning in both animals and humans, besides the possible benefits, and that the scientific, political, philosophical, and broader academic communities should explore these risks and benefits extensively. Rollin's usual methodological call for hesitation before risks would translate into hesitation before the ethical risks of adult mammalian cell cloning instead of his paper's curiously laissez-faire stance.

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