Designer babies: Sweden one step closer to engineering custom-made humans

Thursday, September 29, 2016
By Paul Martin

by: Daniel Barker
Thursday, September 29, 2016

A medical researcher in Sweden has begun attempting to edit the genes of developing human embryos – a move which could lead to the eventual engineering of “designer babies,” and one which is likely to stir serious debate regarding the ethics and safety of such experimentation.

Fredrik Lanner at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm is the first known scientist to break what has long been considered a taboo – the genetic manipulation of healthy human embryos.

His work is almost certain to raise the ire of those who already oppose any human embryonic stem cell research, but it will also likely provoke questions among the less ethically-concerned about whether this new research will eventually be used on embryos implanted in the womb.

Lanner said that his research is only aimed at learning more about how genes “regulate early embryonic development,” according to National Public Radio.

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