First gene-edited babies said to be born in China

First gene-edited babies said to be born in China

The gene modification was done with the help of CRISPR, a gene-editing tool that is cheap and easy to use.

The pushback comes amid claims by Chinese scientist He Jiankui that he had created the world's first genetically-edited babies in a move that gave rise to ethical questions about gene editing.

Daley spoke Wednesday at an worldwide conference in Hong Kong, where the Chinese scientist, He Jiankui of Shenzhen, also is scheduled to speak.

He Jianhui, a scientist at the Southern University of Science and Technology in Shenzhen, believes he has altered the DNA of twin girls to stop them being infected in the future. This raises even more ethical questions.

He spoke after Harvard Medical School Dean George Daley alluded to He's claims as "missteps" that he anxious might set back a highly promising field of research.

A USA 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.

In a series of videos posted on YouTube, He explained that his experiment had worked and that the gene editing hadn't made any unintentional changes to the children's DNA, but Topol said that it was "frankly not possible" to make that claim and added that now Nana and Lulu's offspring would be affected in ways that no one fully understands. This guy claims that he was able to "edit" the children so they won't be susceptible to HIV transmission, which sounds great, but we're still in the infancy of genetic research. However, if his announcement is true, this would be the first time the technique has been used to alter the genes in unborn humans.

Doudna is paid by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, which also supports AP's Health & Science Department.

Professor Joyce Harper, professor in genetics and human embryology at London's UCL, said: "Today's report of genome editing human embryos for resistance to HIV is premature, unsafe and irresponsible".

"Our school will immediately hire authoritative experts to set up an independent committee to conduct in-depth investigations and publish relevant information after investigation", SUSTC said in the statement. "I feel proudest", He said, when challenged by several peers at the conference.

"I must apologise that this result was leaked unexpectedly", he said.

Chinese bioethicist Qiu Renzong was quoted in a tweet by The CRISPR Journal as saying: "There is a convenient and practical method to prevent HIV infection". He said the case showed "there has been a failure of self-regulation by the scientific community" and said the conference committee would meet and issue a statement on Thursday about the future of the field. One of the babies had only one copy of the CCR5 gene edited, which was not enough to confer HIV resistance.

I feel a strong responsibility that it's not just to make a first, but also make it an example.

While there are no laws or regulations in China forbidding the creation of genome-edited children, such practice is widely condemned by the global scientific community.

According to The Guardian, China's National Health Commission has ordered an investigation into He's claims, while the Shenzhen Health and Family Planning Commission has begun examining the ethics of the study. Whether He violated reproductive medicine laws in China has been unclear; Qui contends that it did, but said, "the problem is, there's no penalty". His team targeted a specific gene, CCR5, which plays a role in HIV's spread to healthy cells.

Meanwhile, more American scientists said they had contact with He and were aware of or suspected what he was doing.

Kathy Niakan, an expert at the Francis Crick Institute in London, said: "If true.this would be a highly irresponsible, unethical and risky use of genome editing technology". With this technology comes the risk of altering other genes that weren't meant to be modified. He said there appeared to be no harm caused to other genes. "I think this is justifiable", Harvard geneticist George Church said, calling HIV "a major and growing public health threat".

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