Jump to content


Photo

The Ethics and Consequences of Genetic Engineering


  • This topic is locked This topic is locked
25 replies to this topic

#21 Goddess Nike

Goddess Nike

    Tsundere

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 316 posts
  • LocationIn Despair

Posted 25 March 2016 - 05:21 AM

Gene-editing tools just sound too ripe for abuse.


Even though I've been more on the side of caution and restraint regarding CRISPR for about 3-4 years now, I'm not actually worried about anything serious. I think a wrong move at this point could cause such a public backlash that it would set the field back years if not a decade or more so scientists would rather play it safe than take a potential risk or abuse the technology. Besides the list of beneficial single gene traits is miniscule and manipulation of more complex traits is beyond our reach as of now. Also we still don't know what the long term effects of germline modifications could be either in an individual or through generations.

I was a little more worried three years ago but we already spent the entire 2015 having this debate (seemingly fueled by the somewhat hysterical reaction to what happened in China) and after all the conferences around the world last year I think we're headed towards definitive legislation on genome editing in humans, at least as far as the germline is concerned. Japan, India, China, and the US are the areas that need strict legislation the most. Though I understand that people with certain diseases and their families will want to speed things along I'm still confident we'll be cautious before anything else.


 


  • Candles likes this


2h7297a.jpg

Pro Scientia Atque Sapientia


#22 Kid Frost

Kid Frost

    Hime

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 203 posts
  • LocationJet-Setting

Posted 25 March 2016 - 06:18 AM

Scientists have a tool that can literally rewrite your RNA.


That's not really right...It's DNA in the genome that's edited, RNA molecules are what's used as a guide because that's how CRISPR already works in the first place. We're basically taking advantage of that process to tell Cas9 where exactly to cut which is specified by the guide RNA.

Anyway the Cas9 is old news, the Cpf1 is what's sexy these days :aww: 
In all seriousness though the Cpf1 does seem like it could be a significant improvement on some aspects but it's still a long way from proving itself to the degree the Cas9 has the past few years. We'll see what the future holds.

 


  • Candles and Goddess Nike like this

WZhSNm9.jpg

Spoiler Top 20 Anime

Spoiler Top 20 Manga

Spoiler Top 20 Western Comics

#23 DarkNemesis

DarkNemesis

    Keeper of the Threads

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 15,937 posts

Posted 25 March 2016 - 07:41 AM

I was a little more worried three years ago but we already spent the entire 2015 having this debate (seemingly fueled by the somewhat hysterical reaction to what happened in China)

 

What happened in China?


Kubo's announcement will be his new work will be called Tide; not as strong as bleach but does its trolling in a more colorful fashion! - arcane_chaos

Spoiler

#24 Kid Frost

Kid Frost

    Hime

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 203 posts
  • LocationJet-Setting

Posted 25 March 2016 - 08:19 AM

What happened in China?


Scientists in China experimented with editing the genomes of human embryos for the first time (though they were non-viable) which caused a lot of controversy (most of it before people knew all details) and restarted the worldwide debate on ethics relating to the fields of genetic engineering and medicine. It was one of the biggest topics in science last year and was one of the things that brought the CRISPR-Cas9 back into mainstream media attention though that was kind of happening anyway.
People made a really big deal about it which is the hysteria that Nike was talking about but it was a bit of an overreaction honestly. The good thing is that it got people in the scientific community and government to really debate about and focus on making restrictions and limitations on what should and shouldn't be allowed and what obstacles are faced before we can move further. Before there were just ambiguous guidelines in many countries.
You didn't hear about it last year?

 


  • Goddess Nike likes this

WZhSNm9.jpg

Spoiler Top 20 Anime

Spoiler Top 20 Manga

Spoiler Top 20 Western Comics

#25 Masked Rider

Masked Rider

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 95 posts
  • LocationWhere?

Posted 17 April 2016 - 02:01 AM

I personally say there is not a single good reason why we shouldn't do genetic engineering, let's explore the endless possibilities. All ethics and consequences can be handled by always moving forward in research.



#26 Morfeus

Morfeus

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 638 posts
  • LocationIn the moshpit

Posted 17 April 2016 - 05:12 PM

 

I personally say there is not a single good reason why we shouldn't do genetic engineering, let's explore the endless possibilities. All ethics and consequences can be handled by always moving forward in research.

 

Albeit I believe this to be a bit cynical, I agree that ethics and morale should remain without influence in terms of research and progress.

We can always define the ethics and rules on a certain sensitive area, after we have tested the limits.

 

My mother had two abortions; One before my birth and one after. One was dead, another suffered from Down's Syndrome. The latter abortion - both my mom and I agreed - was for the better. Neither of our existences would have been improved by the exitence of a younger brother/sister with mental and partial physical handicaps.

 

While not quite genetical engineering, this is the same dilemma. Do we dare mess with the process of creating life, if it improves the existence of others? 

 

I say yes. Why not perfect us as much as possible? Genetically engineering people in terms of physical and intellectual capabilities seems totally fine to me, since I don't see how it would have a negative effect on the world as we know it. 

 

Changing personalities, now that's another area entirely. That reminds me oddly of 1984, where the previous generation would engineer the next generation with the same addictions and impossible reasoning. That's a realm I wouldn't dare touch, as it could change the whole future of the world, if we all began to design our children with certain ethical, religious, political or personal ideas in mind.

 

Of course there are limits as to how much you can engineer personalities from the get-go and how much of the personalities are decided throughout childhood. But I wish that we refrain from ever exploiting it if ever possible.

 

Peace, people.


Take, take all you need

And I'll compensate your greed

With broken hearts

Sell, I'll sell your memories

For 15 pounds per year

But just the good days

 




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users