Hot Topics: Genetics
In May of 2019 The New Bioethics carried a paper (purchase or subscription required) by Jennifer Gumer of Columbia and Loyola Marymount Universities, summarizing an argument against heritable genome editing (the kind in which an embryo’s genes are edited so that the change will be passed down to the subject’s descendants), based on Belmont principalism. …Full Article
By César Palacios-González @CPalaciosG More than a year after the fallout from He Jiankui’s announcement to the world that he had edited human embryos in order to made them resistant to HIV, the debate on whether we should move ahead with heritable human genome editing has given no signs of slowing down. For example, just a […]Full Article
Some weeks ago, a utilitarian perspective in favor of heritable genome editing was published (purchase or subscription required to read). In it, the author, Kevin Smith of Abertay University in the United Kingdom, begins with a general defense of utilitarianism, the ethical philosophy that what is morally good is what produces the greatest good for …Full Article
In a target article in this Journal in 2018, for which we were two of the co-authors, we discussed the problematic nature of the patenting of foundational (bio)technological processes, in particular the CRISPR-Cas9 (CRISPR) gene-editing technique.…Full Article
by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.
As the legend goes, in the 16th Century, when he was 51 years of age, Ponce de Leon received permission from the King and Queen of Spain to explore the islands north of Puerto Rico to search for the fountain of youth, a fabled spring that would grant eternal life and youth to whomever drank from it or bathed in it.…Full Article
The title does not mean societal or legal control of gene editing technology. Rather, it speaks of controlling, or shutting off, a specific gene editing process. In retrospect, it had to be the case that there is a resistance, or control, mechanism for the CRISPR system, the gene-editing machinery that functions as a way for …Full Article
by Vera Lúcia Raposo, Ph.D.
Last December it was made public that He Jiankui was sentenced to 3 years in prison and a fine of 3M yuan due to the genetic modification of two twin babies.…Full Article
A writer in Nature says that China sent a “strong signal” by punishing He Jiankui and two colleagues with fines, jail times, and bans against working again in human reproductive technology or applying for research funding. (They lost their jobs as well and may not be able to do research work, presumably in any field, …Full Article
Near the end of 2018, He Jiankui was on the world’s stage announcing that he had edited the genome of twin girls, in the hope of making them resistant to HIV. On Tuesday, December 31, 2019, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) printed a report that Dr. He and two others have been convicted of “illegally …Full Article
Trust and Expectations of Researchers and Public Health Departments for the Use of HIV Molecular Epidemiology
Rational Freedom and Six Mistakes of a Bioconservative
Yesterday’s Child: How Gene Editing for Enhancement Will Produce Obsolescence—and Why It Matters
A Cross-Cultural Neuroethics View on the Language of Disability
The DNA Test Results That Uncovered a Family Secret
Should Researchers Offer Results to Family Members of Cancer Biobank Participants? A Mixed-Methods Study of Proband and Family Preferences
What to Expect When Expecting CRISPR Baby Number Four
Ethical Guidelines for DNA Testing in Migrant Family Reunification
“I want us to be a normal family”: Toward an understanding of the functions of anonymity among U.S. oocyte donors and recipients
23andMe is laying off 100 people, as consumer DNA tests are down. CEO Anne Wojcicki didn’t have a clear explanation for that, but cited a variety of factors, including both recession fears and privacy concerns. Wojcicki said she anticipated that DNA testing would explode when she co-founded the business in 2007, but is now looking ahead to a retracting market.Full Article
DNA testing kits are popular holiday gifts. But they come with privacy risks and can lead to unwelcome surprises.Full Article
Victoria Gray, who has sickle cell disease, is the first patient with a genetic disorder whom doctors in the United States have tried to treat using the powerful gene-editing technique CRISPR.Full Article
The largest study of same-sex sexual behavior finds the genetics are complicated, and social and environmental factors are also key.Full Article
The Hastings Center is a collaborator on a major new federally funded center – the Center for ELSI Resources and Analysis — that will fill a void in genetics research by collecting and sharing information about its ethical, legal, and social (ELSI) implications. This resource hub, the first of its kind, will enable people grappling with these issues to easily find ethical or policy guidance or published research, and to connect with experts who can help them.Full Article
An Ohio family using a home DNA test found that their 25-year-old daughter is not related to her father, according to a lawsuit they filed against a hospital and two fertility practices.
Joe Cartellone said his family made the discovery earlier this year after buying an Ancestry DNA kit to learn more about their Italian heritage, the family’s lawsuit filed Wednesday in the Hamilton County Court of Common Pleas said.Full Article
Dr. Craig Sweet’s fertility clinic in Fort Myers, Florida, has resulted in nearly 3,000 pregnancies.
The pregnancies, he said, have been the upside to his 28 years in the business of helping patients fulfill their dreams of having babies.
But there’s a downside: Hundreds of embryos sit in a frozen state of limbo, abandoned in the center’s storage tanks by in vitro fertilization patients who once sought the help of Sweet’s team in their journey to become parents, then walked away.
“We were not prepared for any of this,” Sweet said.Full Article