The United States Department of Defense is increasingly concerned about the potential threat of gene editing and modifying entire populations.[On February 2016], U.S. director of national intelligence James Clapper released the latest Worldwide Threat Assessment, which added genome editing to the Intelligence Community’s list of weapons of mass destruction…[T]here was an explanation of his concern about the scientific process that involves adding, removing, or replacing DNA in an organism.
Now, the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is taking steps to make sure we avoid catastrophic misuse, with the Safe Genes program… DARPA [is]…requesting proposals from researchers on developing biosafety measures that can be applied to gene-editing technologies….
“DARPA wants to develop controls for gene editing and derivative technologies to support responsible research and defend against irresponsible actors who might intentionally or accidentally release modified organisms[,” stated Renee Wegrzyn.]
The organization hopes…[to] produce safety measures that can be applied at the beginning of genetic engineering developments, and establish techniques for responding to genetic engineering gone wrong.
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