Given that a "clone" (if anything, in the context of human cloning) is taken to be, as far as I have understood, a specimen possessing the same genome as his "father/mother", aren't all "non-cloned" organisms born out of inter-individual, heterosexual reproduction (i.e. "standard" sons and daughters), effectively "half-clones", under that same definition?*

Are "normal" sons and daughters "half-clones", as a matter of fact?


1 Answer 1


A progeny is not a half clone of its parents.

  1. Each cell expresses both maternal and paternal genes. There are no parts of the body or even a cell for that matter that is identical to one of the parents.
  2. When haploid gametes form, chromosomes are randomly segregated. So the gamete receives either paternal and maternal chromosomes (grandparents of the progeny) randomly. This technically means that the gamete is not an exact half of the parent's genome.
  3. During gameteogenesis (production of sperm/ovum), genetic recombination happens between nonsister chromatids of homologous chromosomes (meiotic crossover). This mechanism creates a small shuffle in the haploid genome that the gamete is carrying.
  • $\begingroup$ I see now that my question was pretty unimaginative in the first place. If sons and daughters were half-clones, then there'd be no differentiation between female and male offspring and siblings would all be the same. Thank you $\endgroup$
    – Giuliano
    Commented Oct 15, 2015 at 6:00
  • $\begingroup$ @Giuliano Yes. Now you know what is the mechanism behind that difference. $\endgroup$
    Commented Oct 15, 2015 at 6:02
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @AMR thanks for the correction. I nonchalantly wrote sister chromatids instead of homologous chromosome. $\endgroup$
    Commented Oct 15, 2015 at 6:21

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