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Passage A • Think About It • Read About It • Talk About It • Write About It
1. What kind of people favor the cloning science to proceed? Reference: Infertile people who cannot have babies otherwise, people suffering fatal diseases, and some religious people seeking immortality.
2. For what reasons do most governments prohibit cloning? Reference: Most governments prohibit cloning mainly because it is against nature and causes ethical problems. Besides, the failure rate of cloning is very high.
Read About It • Language Points • Content Awareness • Language Focus
Severino Antinori is a rich Italian doctor with a string of private fertility clinics to his name. He likes watching football and claims the Catholic faith. Yet the Vatican is no fan of his science. In his clinics, Antinori already offers every IVF treatment under the Sun, but still there are couples he cannot help. So now the man Italians call Dr Miracle is offering to clone his patients to create the babies they so desperately want. Not Now, Dr. Miracle
And of course it’s created quite a stir, with other scientists rounding on Antinori as religious leaders line up to attack his cloning plan as an insult to human dignity. Yet it’s an ambition Antinori has expressed many times before. What’s new is that finally it seems to be building a head of steam. Like-minded scientists from the US have joined Antinori in his cloning adventure. At a conference in Rome last week they claimed hundreds of couples have already volunteered for the experiments. Antinori shot to fame seven years ago helping grandmothers give birth using donor eggs. Later he pioneered the use of mice to nurture the sperm of men with poor fertility. He is clearly no ordinary scientist but a showman who thrives on controversy and pushing reproductive biology to the limits. And that of course is one reason why he’s seen as being so dangerous.
However, his idea of using cloning to combat infertility is not as mad as it sounds. Many people have a hard job seeing the point of reproductive cloning. But for some couples, cloning represents the only hope of having a child carrying their genes, and scientists like Antinori are probably right to say that much of our opposition to cloning as a fertility treatment is irrational. In future we may want to change our minds and allow it in special circumstances. But only when the science is ready. And that’s the real problem. Five years on from Dolly, the science of cloning is still stuck in the dark ages. The failure rate is a shocking 97 per cent and deformed babies all too common. Even when cloning works, nobody understands why. So forget the complex moral arguments. To begin cloning people now, before even the most basic questions have been answered, is simply a waste of time and energy.
This is not to say that Antinori will fail, only that if he succeeds it is likely to be at an unacceptably high price. Hundreds of eggs and embryos will be wasted and lots of women will go through difficult pregnancies resulting in miscarriages or abortions. A few years from now techniques will have improved and the wasteful loss won’t be as excessive. But right now there seems to be little anyone can do to keep the cloners at bay.
And it’s not just Antinori and his team who are eager to go. A religious group called the Raelians believes cloning is the key to achieving immortality, and it, too, claims to have the necessary egg donors and volunteers willing to be implanted with cloned embryos. So what about tougher laws? Implanting cloned human embryos is already illegal in many countries but it will never be prohibited everywhere. In any case, the prohibition of cloning is more likely to drive it underground than stamp it out. Secrecy is already a problem. Antinori and his team are refusing to name the country they’ll be using as their base. Like it or not, the research is going ahead. Sooner or later we are going to have to decide whether regulation is safer than prohibition.
Antinori would go for regulation, of course. He believes it is only a matter of time before we lose our hang-ups about reproductive cloning and accept it as just another IVF technique. Once the first baby is born and it cries, he said last week, the world will embrace it. But the world will never embrace the first cloned baby if it is unhealthy or deformed or the sole survivor of hundreds of pregnancies. In jumping the gun, Dr Miracle and his colleagues are taking one hell of a risk. If their instincts are wrong, the backlash against cloning — and indeed science as a whole — could be catastrophic. (704 words)
miraclen. — an unusual and mysterious event that cannot be explained by the laws of nature • Examples • The Great Wall is a miracle of architecture. • A car ran over the child, but by a miracle, he was unhurt.
stringn. — 1) a series of related or similar events 2) (a) narrow cord used to tie, fasten, etc. • Examples • The curious boy asked a string of questions. • The red peppers were all threaded on strings and hung over the door of the house.
Yet the Vatican is no fan of his science Vatican Vatican is the residence of the pope at Rome. Since 1929, the Vatican City has been an independent state (108.7 acres/44 hectares), with the pope as its absolute ruler. More to learn
Yet the Vatican is no fan of his science Yet the Roman Catholic Church opposes his practice.
under the sun — (used for giving force to an expression) on the earth; in the world • Examples • The boy seems to have an opinion on every subject under the sun. • You cannot detect all the sins under the sun. Translate 她是我在那里最最没有预料会见到的人。 Key She is the last person under the sun I expected to see there.
stirn. — (public) excitement • Examples • The coming of the queen caused a great stir in the city. • The news caused a stir of interest on the Stock Exchange.
line up — to (cause to) move into a row, side by side or one behind the other • Examples • The photographer lined up the family members for a picture. • People were lining up there to get a sample of the new product.
conferencen. — a meeting for consultation or discussion • Examples • I’m attending a conference the whole next week. • The press conferences was immediately held after the peace talk.
famen. — the condition of being well known and talked about; renown • Examples • The writer’s third novel was a hit and his fame soon spread all over the world. • The young politician is anxious for fame, not for the benefits of those people he represents.
controversyn. — (a) fierce argument or disagreement about something, esp. one that is carried on in public • Examples • The first cloned sheep gives rise to much controversy. • It’s beyond controversy that the computers can’t really think. Translate The lie detector tests have been the subject of much controversy. Key 测谎试验一直是人颇有争议的题目。 More to learn
controversyn. — (a) fierce argument or disagreement about something, esp. one that is carried on in public controversiala. — causing much argument or disagreement • Example • This is a controversial book.
Many people have a hard job seeing the point of reproductive cloning. Translate 很多人还难以理解利用克隆进行生育的意义。
represent v. — to act or speak officially for (another person or group of people) • Examples • The stars in the flag of the United States represent the States. • Women were poorly represented in the new government. More to learn
represent v. — to act or speak officially for (another person or group of people) • Fill in the blank • A person who has been chosen to act in place of one or more others is called ________________. representative
treatment n. — 1) medical attention; cure 2) behavior towards somebody • Examples • No effective treatment can cure AIDS so far. • The old lady’s treatment to her pet cat is just like the one to her family members.
irrational a. — contrary or opposed to reason • Examples • The irrational reaction to the loss of the football game caused serious consequences. • My wife is an irrational consumer — she cannot resist cheap prices and always buys goods we do not need.
Five years on from Dolly, the science of cloning is still stuck in the dark ages. Translate 克隆羊多利出生五年了，克隆技术却一直见不到曙光。
deform v. — to spoil the form or appearance of • Examples • If the shoes are too tight, they will deform your feet. • Sitting incorrectly for long periods of time can deform your spine. Can you translate the following words into Chinese? form reform transform v.形成；组成 v. 形状；形式 n.v.改革 n.v.转换
argument n. — disagreement; quarrel • Examples • He got into an argument with Jeff in the pub last night. • A careful argument for extraterrestrial life has been presented.
excessive a. — too much; too great; going beyond what is reasonable or right • Examples • Excessive drinking may cause damage on the brain. • An excessive price may affect our market share. Translate 他对服装的兴趣太过分。 Key He takes an excessive interest in clothes.
keep … at bay — to prevent from coming near • Example • I’m trying to keep my creditors at bay.
Raelian — The Raelian Religion, founded by Rael (a French journalist formerly called Claude Vorilhon) in 1973, believes that life on earth was created by extraterrestrials, and supports human cloning.
implant v. — to put something into a living body in a medical operation • Examples • It can help a lot for the patients with heart disease to implant a pacemaker. • An animal organ was implanted into the patient’s body.
illegal a. — prohibited by law • Examples • Some illegal immigrants risk their lives to get into developed countries. • It’s illegal for teenagers to drink in pubs. Can you find a word with the prefix “il-”? ? References illiterate illogical
prohibit v. — to forbid, to issue a law against something • Examples • Smoking is strictly prohibited in public buildings. • Children under 18 are prohibited from buying cigarettes.
stamp out — to put an end to (usu. something bad) completely • Examples • Do you think this new law will stamp out the illegal drugs trade? • This country is making great efforts to stamp out terrorism.
sooner or later — at some time certainly; one day whether soon or (much) later Translate 你如果作弊，迟早总会被发现的。 Key If you cheat, you’ll be found out sooner or later.
go for — to like or be attracted by • Examples • Many of her readers go for romance and mystery. • The young tend to go for adventures while the elderly prefer security. Translate 你喜欢现代音乐吗？ Key Do you go for modern music? More to learn
go for — to like or be attracted by go for nothing — to be wasted; have no result • Example • All my hard work went for nothing. More to learn
go for — to like or be attracted by go for nothing — to be wasted; have no result go in for — to take part in; enter • Example • Several people went in for the race.
embrace v. — to accept (an idea); make use of • Examples • Nowadays more and more Westerners embrace oriental culture. • The child is encouraged to embrace every opportunity.
sole a. — being the only one; only • Examples • He is the sole owner of the basketball club. • The sole survivor of the accident was found in the water six hours later.
jump the gun — to take action too soon or before the proper time • Examples • I know he’s a suspect, but isn’t it jumping the gun a bit to arrest him immediately? • They jumped the gun by rushing out of the classroom before permission had been given.
instinct a. — (a) natural ability or tendency to act in a certain way, without having to learn or think about it • Examples • Birds learn to fly by instinct. • Crying is an instinct in humans.