Scientists from the Francis Crick Institute in England started experimenting last month on 7-day-old living human embryos donated from in-vitro fertilization (IVF) to edit out gene OCT4 that handles development of the baby. The only problem is these experiments kill these embryonic babies.
“What lies at the heart of this debate is our view of the human embryo,” said Gov. Sam Brownback, the Ambassador At Large for International Religious Freedom. “The central question in this debate is simple: Is the human embryo a person or a piece of property?” Members of the pro-life community, who intrinsically understand life begins at conception, are not the only ones concerned with this latest technological advancement.
Jennifer Doudna, who pioneered the CRISPR gene-editing tool used by the Francis Crick researchers, is also concerned where her invention is leading morally: “I have to admit that I feel personally uncomfortable with the idea that there could eventually be factories pumping out lots of human embryos for the purposes of experimentation. I can’t put my finger on why, but it feels like it cheapens something about human life.”
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