Thursday, March 23, 2017

Anticipating public concern over genome editing

Genome editing: an ethical review

The Nuffield Council has released a key document on ethical implications of genome editing. You'll notice that it is an open document, a work in progress because technology is evolving. If you want an excerpt check this short guide.

It should be remembered that most prospective technologies fail, and that some lead to undesirable consequences, a fact often obscured by ‘whig’ histories that reconstruct the history of successful technologies and their beneficial social consequences. Scientific discovery and technological innovation is important but not inevitable. Most important among the factors shaping technological development is human agency. It is human agency, in terms of decisions that are made about directions of research, funding and investment, the setting of legal limits and regulatory principles, the design of institutions and programmes, and the desire for or acceptance of different possible states of affairs, that will determine whether, and which, prospective technologies emerge and, ultimately,
their historical significance.
Nuffield council work is of interest, meanwhile, China is already testing CRISPR technology in humans, no ethical concerns...


Josep Segú - Barcelona

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