Sunday, December 2, 2018
"If it is true, this experiment is a monster."
Syntax Julian Sabresco, Professor of ethics practice Oxford University, The international scientific community and Chinese geneticists. He is Jian Qui He worked this week. "After years of research," he and his team made the first two genetically modified babies.
So finally someone crossed the line. He broke an unofficial agreement that global scientists have not used genetic editing technology in human embryos and germ cells so far. In 2015 Edward Lancer, President The Rehabilitation Medicine Association in WashingtonHas publicly requested this moratorium to be respected until it is convinced that this procedure will not have catastrophic consequences for humans.
"It's not ethical or safe," he said.
To him Jiankui (34) that warning did not stop him.
A dangerous experiment
In his lab, in a Chinese city ShenzhenHe and his team brought couples who wanted to have children. HIV. They used a CRISPR reagent, a kind of precision molecular scissors, to create an embryo by artificial insemination and activate the CCR5 gene, which prevents HIV from entering the immune system.
The results of previous experiments are unknown. What is known this week is what he announced: the gene was successfully transformed from two women and the other gene was not changed.
His goal is to be altruistic, giving parents the opportunity to have healthy children.
But according to experts around the world, his experiments are extremely dangerous.
First, because it transcends ethical lines: manipulating human embryos will destroy them. But it also does not know what will happen to the gene in the future. "By doing this, he is changing the human gene pool, and we will not be able to see it until later generations," he says. Dennis Ro, Department of Clinical Pathology Hong Kong University.
Just like it was not enough, a few months ago, Natural medicine Published two articles warning that the application of CRISPR-Cas9 could cause all sorts of mutations and promote the emergence of cancerous tumors.
The most worrying thing in the immediate future is that his business can lead to a dreadful scenario of industrialization. "Design Baby". Children genetically modified to have white skin, blue eyes, blond hair, etc., as well as being protected from illness before birth. Their "designers" or their parents do not know the hidden and terrible changes that can occur in their bodies.
For this reason, the scientific community has come back. In a statement, 122 Chinese scientists said their project was "crazy." That World Geneticist ConferenceHe appeared this week and issued a statement saying his actions were "irresponsible" in hopes of gaining praise as critics and welcoming criticism hail. It is extremely annoying that the Chinese government ordered the suspension of the experiment and started a thorough investigation. (O.M.)