Summit Denounces Gene Editing Claim, Calls For ‘Translational Pathway’ To Human Trials

NPR: Science Summit Denounces Gene-Edited Babies Claim, But Rejects Moratorium
“A Chinese scientist’s claims that he created the world’s first gene-edited babies is a ‘deeply disturbing’ and ‘irresponsible’ violation of international scientific norms, according to a formal conclusion issued Thursday by organizers of the Second International Summit on Human Genome Editing in Hong Kong. The summit was jolted by scientist He Jiankui’s surprise and unverified claims earlier this week that he had edited the genes of twin girls who were born last month…” (Stein, 11/29).

Science: Organizers of gene editing meeting blast Chinese study but call for a “pathway” to human trials
“…[The conference statement] did not call for a global moratorium on similar studies, as some scientists had hoped; instead it called for a ‘translational pathway’ that might eventually bring the ethically fraught technology to patients in a responsible way. … The first summit, held in Washington, D.C. in December 2015, concluded with a statement that specifically said that unless and until safety, efficacy, and ethical and regulatory issues are resolved, ‘it would be irresponsible to proceed with any clinical use of germline editing,’ a reference to genetic modifications that can be passed on to the next generation. But that is exactly what Chinese researcher He Jiankui did…” (Normile, 11/29).

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