Europe broke in crocodile tears about Chinese gene engineering
Let’s remember the story of the aviation bombs, as a sort of armament. After Italians used them in Libya more that a century ago there was a international outcry and the bombs were banned. Forever. But they were used extensively in WWI. In WWII it was the most effective weapon in terms of the deaths caused. Just remember Hamburg and Hiroshima. But the bomb is not the ultimate weapon. The man himself is an ultimate weapon. And those who will invite the ‘superhuman’ to the life will ultimately take the lead. One of the way to achieve it is genetic engineering. Maybe. And any messages on the true or fake achievements in the human gene engineering are met with outcry. Just as it was when Italians used first airborne bombs. China is leading force behind the human experiments. The communist ideology allows it.
A Chinese professor unveiled Monday on YouTube that he has programmed embryos to make them less susceptible to the HIV virus. Medical authorities in China at all levels say nothing about the controversial report. It should be noted, that due to the some genetic mutations something around 10 percent of the Europeans are immune to the HIV. So the professor did not introduce something otherworldly to the planet.
Let’s look at the European sandbox and see the reaction.
Unacceptable, says MP Pia Dijkstra: “As far as D66 is concerned, this experiment, if it really happened, is very unwise. It is the action of a loner, rather than the medical community. ”
The D66 member wants scientists to be able to investigate whether serious genetic disorders can be prevented with technology, but safety is paramount. “This experiment does not seem to be safe, and has not been applied to a hereditary disease. We also disapprove of this. “The CDA also speaks of an ‘undesirable’ development.
The VVD understands the search of desperate parents, but also finds that not every goal justifies the means. Member of Parliament Ockje Tellegen: ,, As a parent you want to prevent your child from getting an incurable illness. That scientists can do more and more, is good. But not everything that is possible is desirable. ”
That is why a good public discussion about such a complicated topic is important, says Tellegen. “Only in this way will there be support for technological developments that can cure diseases that are currently still incurable.”
Carla Dik-Faber (ChristenUnie) calls the adaptation of DNA ‘medically and ethically highly controversial’. “That is not for nothing. Firstly because it would be deeply intervention in the unborn life and secondly because we do not know what the risks are, both for the children themselves and for the offspring. The actions of this Chinese scientist are – if it is true – completely irresponsible.”
According to healthcare minister Hugo de Jonge, the question is whether the claim of the scientist is correct. “But if it turns out to be true, this researcher is far ahead of what is globally scientific, clinical and ethically acceptable.”
The consensus among scientists, according to the minister, is that the technology is still insufficiently proven effective and safe for clinical application. “So this researcher has taken big risks for the two babies.”
For example, according to De Jonge, this is not about curing a hereditary disorder, but about applying a trait that can prevent the incidence of a disorder.
“I have already announced that I want to start the social dialogue about this so-called germ line modification in the Netherlands. We will start this year next year.”