Gene-edited babies, so what’s our take?

A CHINESE scientist who recently claimed to have created the world’s first genetically edited baby using CRISPR technology has been accused of circumventing regulations and acting in his own interests, in the preliminary findings of an official investigation into the case. The academic from the Southern University of Science and technology, Shenzhen was fired from his job. Reportedly, the researcher, He Jiankui, had “defied government bans and conducted the research in the pursuit of personal fame and gain”. The investigation also found a second woman had become pregnant as a result of his experiment. We have a question: “Are scientist stepping across established ethical red lines, which could raise public suspicion and obliterate a field of very potential research? Four local scientists share their thoughts with SHAMIRA SHAMSUDDIN and JOSEPH MASILAMANY .

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DR REENA RAJASURIAR,
HIV Scientist, Centre for Excellence for Research in AIDS, University of Malaya

“Rogue scientist at work“
THE technology for gene editing is still not 100 per cent safe and there could be “off target” effects which could be detrimental. So, to apply this technique to humans is wrong and these babies have been unnecessarily put at risk.

All experiments on humans