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Ian Wilmut is 002 — License to Clone

Tuesday Ian Wilmut, creator of Dolly the cloned sheep, was granted a cloning license by British regulators.

He’s now going to study how nerve cells go awry to cause motor neuron diseases, in the hope of unraveling the mysteries of muscle-wasting illnesses such as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

Predictably, members of all the anti-cloning groups produced their expected chorus of boos and antipathies.

But you know what?

Let one of them or a loved one contract Lou Gehrig’s disease, and begin the terrible descent into a living hell and a painful, agonizing, drawn-out death, and then be given the option of an injection of clone-derived stem cells proven to cure the disease, and what do you think they’d say?

Thought so.

Wilmut’s is the second cloning license to be granted by the British government.

Last August the first — “001″ — was given to a team that hopes to use cloning to create insulin-producing cells for diabetics.

Here’s a link to Thomas Wagner’s Associated Press story, which appeared in yesterday’s USA Today.

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