Where is China’s third CRISPR baby and what does it mean for the genetics revolution?

| July 17, 2019
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This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

Last November, Chinese biophysicist He Jiankui shocked the world by announcing that the word’s first gene edited human babies, two Chinese girls, had been born the previous month. Dr. He was roundly and, in my view, rightly condemned for making this happen.

…He announced there was another prospective mother in his study who was in the “early stages” of pregnancy. … In that case, one of 4 things may have happened. I’ll rank them in my perceived order of likelihood:

  • the third Chinese CRISPR baby has already been born and the Chinese government is enforcing an information blockade;
  • the third baby was aborted either under pressure from the Chinese government or based on a decision of the prospective parents once the dangerous irresponsibility of He’s actions became clear, or the pregnancy ended through natural causes;
  • the third Chinese CRISPR baby is just about to be born; or
  • there was never a third embryo.
Related article:  'Family duty' could explain why so many Chinese couples signed up for controversial 'CRISPR baby' experiment

[E]ven if the third CRISPR baby has already been born, the fourth, fifth, tenth, hundredth… are on the way in the not-too-distant future. … The essential question for us is whether our species can organize ourselves quickly and well enough to ensure our best values are woven into every aspect of the decision-making process about how these technologies will be used.

Read full, original post: Has the third CRISPR baby already been born?

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