Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

Human therapeutic cloning


Somatic cell nuclear 'reprogramming' in livestock species is now routine in many laboratories. Here, Robert Lanza, Jose Cibelli and Michael West discuss how these techniques may soon be used to clone genetically matched cells and tissues for transplantation into patients suffering from a wide range of disorders that result from tissue loss or dysfunction.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution

Access options

Rent or buy this article

Prices vary by article type



Prices may be subject to local taxes which are calculated during checkout

Figure 1: Procedure for human therapeutic cloning.


  1. Thomson, J.A. et al. Embryonic stem cell lines derived from human blastocytes. Science 282,1145–1147 (1998).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  2. Shamblott, M.J. et al. Derivation of pluripotent stem cells from cultured human primordial germ cells. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 95, 13726–13731 (1998).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  3. Cibelli, J.B. et al. Transgenic bovine chimeric offspring produced from somatic cell-derived stem-like cells. Nature Biotechnol. 16, 642–646 (1998).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  4. Langer, R. & Vacanti, J.P. Tissue engineering. Science 260, 920–926 (1993).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  5. Lanza, R.P. Langer, R. & Chick, W.L. Principles of Tissue Engineering (Academic, San Diego, California, 1997).

    Google Scholar 

  6. Mooney, D.J. & Mikos, A.G. Growing new organs. Sci. Am. 280, 60–65 (1999).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  7. Wilmut, I., Schnieke, A.E., McWhir, J., Kind, A.J. & Campbell, K.H.S. Viable offspring derived from fetal and adult mammalian cells. Nature 385, 810–813 (1997).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  8. Campbell, K.H.S., McWhir, J., Ritchie, W.A. & Wilmut, I. Sheep cloned by nuclear transfer from cultured cell line. Nature 380, 64–66 (1996).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  9. Kato, Y. et al. Eight calves cloned from somatic cells of a single adult. Science 262, 2095–2098 (1998).

    Article  Google Scholar 

  10. Cibelli, J.B. et al. Cloned transgenic calves produced from nonquiescent fetal fibroblasts. Science 280, 1256–1258 (1998).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  11. Baguisi, A. et al. Production of goats by somatic cell nuclear transfer. Nature Biotechnol. 17, 456–461 (1999).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  12. Robl, J., Cibelli, J. & Stice, S.L. Embryonic or stem-like cell lines produced by cross species nuclear transplantation. International Patent Application Number WO 98/07841. World Intellectual Property Organization, 26 February 1998.

  13. Kenyon, L. & Moraes, C.T. Expanding the functional human mitochondrial DNA database by the establishment of primate xenomitochondrial cybrids. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 94, 9131–9135 (1997).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  14. Dominko, T. et al. Bovine oocyte cytoplasm supports development of embryos produced by nuclear transfer of somatic cell nuclei from various mammalian species. Biol. Reprod. 60, 1496–1502 (1999).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  15. Vogel, G. Harnessing the power of stem cells. Science 283, 1432–1434 (1999).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Robert P. Lanza.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Lanza, R., Cibelli, J. & West, M. Human therapeutic cloning. Nat Med 5, 975–977 (1999).

Download citation

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI:

This article is cited by


Quick links

Nature Briefing

Sign up for the Nature Briefing newsletter — what matters in science, free to your inbox daily.

Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing