As moviegoers eagerly await the 2018 installment of the “Jurassic World” series, and the science community renews their debate over Dolly the Sheep’s longevity, cloning continues to capture the world’s imagination.
Recently, I visited the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh and saw the remains of Dolly, the first mammal cloned from adult cells. Seeing the taxidermy version of Dolly reminded me of how far science has progressed since this sheep was created from mammary cells in 1996. Livestock cloning was the precursor to stem cell research and other types of genetic engineering. Some nations have banned cloning, and others, like the U.S., continue to clone plants and livestock and to research cloned cells. While it is some of the most exciting research, it’s fraught with ethical issues health care and biology.
Here at the College of Health and Human Sciences, I’m proud of our faculty who educate our students to understand the nuances of scientific research, its advances, and the ethics surrounding groundbreaking discoveries. As we look back on 2017 and head into the new year, I wish for us to have health and continued wisdom to use our scientific advances in ethical ways to advance health, well being, and public policy.
Derryl Block, Dean College of Health and Human Sciences