Human germline editing ethics proposal: ‘No human pregnancy’

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A team of genetics experts has issued a policy statement recommending that research on editing human genes in eggs, sperm and early embryos continue, provided the work does not result in a human pregnancy.

Kelly Ormond, MS, professor of genetics at the Stanford School of Medicine, is one of three lead authors of the statement, which provides a framework for regulating the editing of human germ cells.

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Kelly Ormond

Ormond recently discussed the issues that prompted the statement’s creation with writer Jennie Dusheck.

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Q: Why did you think it was important to issue a statement now?

We’ve been able to alter genes for many years now, but the new techniques, such as CRISPR/Cas9, that have come out in the past five years have made it a lot easier, and things are moving fast. It’s now quite realistic to do human germline gene editing, and some people have been calling for a moratorium on such work.

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We worry that restricting federal funding on things like germline editing will drive the research underground so there’s less regulation and less transparency. We felt it was really important to say that we support federal funding for this kind of research.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: Genetics expert discusses creating ground rules for germline editing

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