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CommonHealth: What To Make Of Scientists Successfully Editing Embryo DNA06:04
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In this microscope photo provided by Oregon Health & Science University, human embryos grow in a laboratory for a few days after researchers used gene editing technology to successfully repair a heart disease-causing genetic mutation. The work, a scientific first led by researchers at Oregon Health & Science University, marks a step toward one day preventing babies from inheriting diseases that run in the family. (Oregon Health & Science University via AP)
In this microscope photo provided by Oregon Health & Science University, human embryos grow in a laboratory for a few days after researchers used gene editing technology to successfully repair a heart disease-causing genetic mutation. The work, a scientific first led by researchers at Oregon Health & Science University, marks a step toward one day preventing babies from inheriting diseases that run in the family. (Oregon Health & Science University via AP)
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Scientists have successfully used CRISPR, a new technology for engineering genes, to correct a mutation that causes heart disease by editing the DNA of human embryos. The experiment correctly modified nearly two-thirds of the embryos and did not cause any other dangerous mutations in the DNA.

The study, led by scientist Shoukhrat Mitalipov in Oregon, could potentially improve the genetic makeup of families afflicted by genetic diseases

What are we to make over the eventual possibility of 'designer babies' and how should we begin the conversation around the ethical issues involved?

Guest

Carey Goldberg, host of WBUR's CommonHealth blog, which tweets @commonhealth.

This segment aired on August 7, 2017.

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