First Genome-Edited Babies? - Hit & Run

Chinese government orders ‘immediate investigation’ as scientist claims 1st gene-edited babies

Chinese government orders ‘immediate investigation’ as scientist claims 1st gene-edited babies

A woman is already pregnant with the next CRISPR baby, according to He Jiankui, the Chinese scientist who claims to have already created the world's first genetically edited babies.

In the videos, He claims to have used CRISPR-Cas9 not to prevent a heritable disease in the twins, but to try to give them extra protection against developing HIV in the future. "The University will call for global experts to form an independent committee to investigate this incident, and to release the results to the public".

China's Ministry of Health said it was placing a high priority on the case and that it ordered the probe.

In this October 10, 2018 photo, He Jiankui is reflected in a glass panel as he works at a computer at a laboratory in Shenzhen in southern China's Guangdong province.

Media reports triggered Shenzhen's Southern University of Science and Technology, where He is now on unpaid leave, to release a statement Monday explaining that the organisation was "deeply shocked" and is trying to establish communications with He to clarify the extent of his research.

However, the Shenzhen commission said the hospital's ethics committee was not valid because the hospital did not register the committee's establishment with the commission as required. He posted an ethical approval form for the process on his website. But his announcement sparked heated controversy over concerns over medical ethics and effectiveness. Two girls named Nana and Lulu were born with the genetic changes, he said. He's actions are a clear ethics violation and tread into unknown territory.

He told the AP he felt a strong responsibility "not just to make a first, but also to make an example" for future research.

I am now at the Second International Summit on Human Genome Editing, where controversial CRIPSR scientist Jiankui He presented his research just a few hours ago.

Additionally, Dr. He adamantly denies that his research and work in gene editing serves the goal of the infamous "designer baby" concept.

Criticism didn't come only from China.

Jiankui said he practiced editing mice, monkey and human embryos for several years and has even applied for patents on his scientific methods.




He added that he had initially funded the experiment by himself. The school placed He on leave and said they'd be investigating the work conducted in the lab.

According to the South China Morning Post, the letter was published on social media on late Monday and was signed by scientists at some of China's leading research universities, such as Peking University and Tsinghua, as well as overseas institutions, including Stanford in the United States and Singapore's Agency for Science, Technology and Research.

Church, known for contrarian views, also said that he thought it would only be matter of time before the identities of the children and their mother became known.

The parties mentioned in the research have denied having any knowledge of He's project, while on Tuesday, China's science ministry said it would investigate whether the associate professor had broken the law.

"What is wrong with replacing old humanity with a new humanity?" "I never expected to see something like Marvel comics in real life.a rebel eccentric scientist as the protagonist who wants to save all human beings".

Doudna and other researchers noted that genetically editing for HIV didn't solve an unmet need.

Using the analogy of cloning technology, he said: "After Dolly the Sheep, there have been many animals tested for cloning".

The researcher used the CRISPR-cas9 to operate on DNA by either adding a gene or disabling a problem one.

The Nobel laureate David Baltimore, an organiser of the summit, who is professor emeritus of biology at the California Institute of Technology, called He's work irresponsible.

A US 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.

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