Health & Family Life

Chinese Report Success of Gene-Edited Babies

NIH Statement on Claim of First Gene-Edited Babies by Chinese Researcher

Photo: geneticliteracyproject.org

Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D.
Director, National Institutes of Health

NIH is deeply concerned about the work just presented at the Second International Summit on Human Genome Editing in Hong Kong by Dr. He Jiankui, who described his effort using CRISPR-Cas9 on human embryos to disable the CCR5 gene. He claims that the two embryos were subsequently implanted, and infant twins have been born. This work represents a deeply disturbing willingness by Dr. He and his team to flaunt international ethical norms. The project was largely carried out in secret, the medical necessity for inactivation of CCR5 in these infants is utterly unconvincing, the informed consent process appears highly questionable, and the possibility of damaging off-target effects has not been satisfactorily explored. It is profoundly unfortunate that the first apparent application of this powerful technique to the human germline has been carried out so irresponsibly. The need for development of binding international consensus on setting limits for this kind of research, now being debated in Hong Kong, has never been more apparent. Without such limits, the world will face the serious risk of a deluge of similarly ill-considered and unethical projects. Should such epic scientific misadventures proceed, a technology with enormous promise for prevention and treatment of disease will be overshadowed by justifiable public outrage, fear, and disgust.

Lest there be any doubt, and as we have stated previously, NIH does not support the use of gene-editing technologies in human embryos.

Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D.
Director, National Institutes of Health

Carol Duff, MSN, BA, RN
{p}Carol graduated from Riverside White Cross School of Nursing in Columbus, Ohio and received her diploma as a registered nurse. She attended Bowling Green State University where she received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History and Literature. She attended the University of Toledo, College of Nursing, and received a Master's of Nursing Science Degree as an Educator.{/p}{p}She has traveled extensively, is a photographer, and writes on medical issues. Carol has three children RJ, Katherine, and Stephen - two daughters-in-law; Suzy and Katie - two granddaughters; Isabella Marianna and Zoe Olivia - and one grandson, Alexander Paul. She also shares her life with husband Gordon Duff, many cats, two rescue pups, and two guinea pigs.{/p}{p}Carol's Archives 2009-2013{/p}

4 Replies to “Chinese Report Success of Gene-Edited Babies

  1. Feels more like a conversation starter than the real ‘first time”,… going to Mars, extending life span, eliminating disease , and adaptation to harsh environment, would already be in play, but to bring these public needs a conversation about eugenics.
    And never forget, military R&D would be visibly drooling. This is our clue, that this is coming like it or not, and the ethics conversation is a formality, really more of a “after the fact” gesture.
    I am actually more concerned about the plants and insects, as that is more bottom up process, with major containment issues.

  2. Well, to quote a recent contributor to VT:
    “The war against Western ideology and the European people, who are the last and only people that can stand in the way of complete destruction of the world as we know it, is about eliminating those who can prevent the dystopic, degenerate rule of generational psychopaths who plan to end civilization and foment a new dark age based on barbarism.”
    Ethical appeals, and concerns about Hi Jiankui’s activities?
    You must be joking. “Deaf Ears” doesn’t quite catch it,,,

  3. This is one of the reasons I put that possibility coming true in my 21st Deceleration Of Independence because at some point, they will make an artificial womb with all the proper methods to keep the baby growing. Also this will be necessary if we humans start having babies while drifting in Zero-G as we travel around the planets within and beyond our Solar System. We really need to re-think EVERYTHING for a new Constitution to avoid the white slaves and Indian massacres from early 1600’s to that the late 1770’s. It wasn’t until mid 1750’s that black slaves were captured and sold here in the new America, otherwise many of the pilgrims just grabbed poor young boys, men and girls and women who wouldn’t be missed, or pursued. The Native Africans were just plain slaves and brought a higher price since they were full grown, mostly, but not always.

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