‘Genetically Edited’ Babies Born in China

Researcher He Jiankui of Shenzhen, China, said he altered embryos for seven couples during fertility treatments, one resulting in pregnancy. The alterations were to make the offspring resistant to HIV infection, according to He. (AP photo)

Associated Press – A Chinese researcher claims that he helped make the world’s first genetically edited babies — twin girls born this month whose DNA he said he altered with a powerful new tool capable of rewriting the very blueprint of life. If true, it would be a profound leap of science and ethics.

A U.S. scientist said he took part in the work in China, but this kind of gene editing is banned in the United States because the DNA changes can pass to future generations and it risks harming other genes. Many mainstream scientists think it’s too unsafe to try, and some denounced the Chinese report as human experimentation.

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