HealthCare

A Scientist from China Managed to Edit the Genes of Babies with CRISPR

A scientist from China claims that he has created the first genetically edited babies of the world by using CRISPR tool. He Jiankui, the scientist told the media that earlier in the month, two girls by the name of Lula and Nana were born. They took birth after the embryo-editing occurred by making use of CRISPR in order to disable the CCR5 gene. It allows the HIV virus to get the cells infected. As per reports, an American scientist named Michael Deem also helped the Chinese Scientist on the project at the Southern University of Science and Technology of China.

According to He Jiankui, he went on to edit the embryos for seven couples, who were affected by HIV. They resulted in only one pregnancy till now. The scientist even added that the patients did not want either to get identified or interviewed by any media house. Surprisingly, the hospital in which the scientist had conducted the work went over to completely deny his claims. The hospital confirmed that the process of gene editing did not take place at their hospital. The spokesperson from the hospital said that no one had brought the babies out there. The news has already begun to cause an uproar among the researchers in the United States, who bashed it by terming the case as immoral, unconscionable and unethical in nature.

The Scientist’s work has not got published in a scientific journal, which is peer-reviewed. It means that there is not at all an independent confirmation of the research. The scientists, who were shown the materials of He Jiankui, went on to conclude that the tests conducted so far are totally insufficient believe that the editing worked out or even to rule out the possibility of causing harm to all those babies, who were genetically edited. The UK, as well as Japan, has given the go-ahead signal to edit the human embryos, which get donated, in order to understand the processes of development better. Last year, the National Academy of Sciences also managed to endorse embryonic engineering but only in those cases, which would otherwise lead to children taking birth serious genetic diseases.

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