Although a committee voted last month to lift the ban on genetic modification of embryos intended for pregnancy and birth, the American Congress has in the end decided to maintain it. “While some experts argued that the United States will lag behind equivalent countries […], others feared a slippery slope towards unintended consequences and eugenics”. Worried about hindering scientific progress on the one hand, and aware of the ethical problems with “tailor-made” babies on the other hand, the Congress Committee backed down on Tuesday. The ban on genetically modifying babies, which came into force in 2016 shortly after the discovery of CRISPR technology, is maintained.
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