‘Have and have nots’: Future of biotech is human modification


[I]n the next decade, the phrase [“have and have nots”] might mean “modded or unmodded”—as in, “have you been modified?” With biotech advancements such as brain-implanted neural chips, stem cell research, and gene editing, enhanced humans could usher in a new phase of evolution.

I spoke with Dr. Amanda Mason, Assistant Director for Strategy and Planning at MESH Academy.

[PCMag:] What’s your vision of biotech’s future?

[Mason:]I see a wide use of CRISPR, which is a type of gene editing, to correct disease—especially in the blood, which is easier to do [than other tissue types]. Then, as the technology matures, we will see editing in other tissues, and a movement away from the existing focus on cancer treatments.

Related article:  China tightens gene-editing regulations in wake of CRISPR baby scandal

[PCMag:] Do you then see a threshold emerging of those “with mods” and those without? Essentially cyborgs versus those who, well, are the “basic bio model”?

[Mason:] I guess my interpretation is quite different from a black and white “have versus have not” scenario. With real consideration on the subject, I’ve realized the pace of these discoveries have been robust over these past few decades, and I hope for a continual gradual process of innovation. Through our work in biotech, I hope these breakthroughs keep being deployed to improve and save lives.

Read full, original post: This USC Innovator Explains How Biotech Can Enhance Humans

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