China orders halt to gene-editing after outcry over babies

China orders halt to gene-editing after outcry over babies

Scientists lined up to criticise Chinese biologist He Jiankui on Wednesday as he sought to defend his work on what he says are the world's first genetically edited babies.

He's announcement of his embryo editing Monday sent a thunderbolt through the scientific world.

American biochemist David Liu, a co-inventor of the CRISPR/Cas9 technology that He said he used to alter the gene, said there was no unmet medical need for these girls.

After He's findings were announced, the Chinese government ordered an "immediate investigation" into the incident. He did not indicate whether He was charged with any crimes.

"The experiment "seriously violates" China's laws, regulations, and ethical standards if it indeed occurred as reported by media", said Zeng Yixin, vice minister of the National Health Commission, in an interview with CCTV published on its website Thursday.

"It is shocking and unacceptable", Xu was quoted by the state broadcaster China Central Television on Thursday as saying.

In their statement Thursday, the summit's organizers said that even if "the modifications are verified, the procedure was irresponsible and failed to conform with worldwide norms." Dr.

Organisers of the conference said in a statement: "Even if the modifications are verified, the procedure was irresponsible and failed to conform with worldwide norms".

On Thursday, the organising committee of the summit released a statement, saying that the experiment was "irresponsible and failed to conform with global norms".

Looking pale and sounding anxious, He told the audience he was proud of his gene editing work.

One couple dropped out, but there was "another potential pregnancy" of a gene-edited embryo in its early stages. The pregnancy was much like "regular IVF with one difference". He was accused of experimenting on humans with an unproven and potentially unsafe technology, as the changes made on the babies could be passed on to future generations.

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He said he had funded the experiment himself and confirmed his university had not been aware of it. "Should such epic scientific misadventures proceed, a technology with enormous promise for prevention and treatment of disease will be overshadowed by justifiable public outrage, fear, and disgust". In the United Kingdom, editing of embryos may be permitted for research purposes with strict regulatory approval.

After word first leaked of He's project through news reports, scientists criticized the effort as irresponsible and premature.

The Southern University of Science and Technology in Shenzhen said earlier in the week he had been on unpaid leave since February, and it would be investigating the claims.

The scientist had told a packed biomedical conference in Hong Kong on Wednesday he was "proud" to have successfully altered the DNA of the twins.

As you might imagine, this isn't what the organizers of the summit had in mind.

He Jiankui states that he practiced gene editing in mice, monkey, and human embryos in lab trials for several years and has applied for patents in his methods.

"I think the failure was his, not the scientific community", Charo said.

In an open letter, more than 300 Chinese scientists raised 10 questions for He and his team related to safety, effectiveness and goal of the research, and whether he has concealed other related experiments from the public, China Daily reported.

Those recommendations suggested the technology could be useful, which may have emboldened He.

As if things couldn't get weirder, the university then came out to say the scientist had gone rogue and carried out the study in secret without their knowledge.

The academy said it hopes the babies would grow up happy and healthy, both physically and psychologically, with "the most care possible that can be provided by society".

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