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Published On: Wed, Jun 27th, 2012

First genetically modified human babies creates a stir

The world’s first genetically modified humans have been created, reports the Daily Mail.

The disclosure reports that thirty healthy babies were born after a series of experiments in the United States provoking another furious debate about ethics.

Near Magazine reports that the babies were born to women who had problems conceiving. Extra genes from a female donor were inserted into their eggs before they were fertilised in an attempt to enable them to conceive.

Two of the babies have been tested and have been found to contain genes from three ‘parents’.

Fifteen of the children were born in the past three years as a result of one experimental program at the Institute for Reproductive Medicine and Science of St Barnabas in New Jersey.

The fact that the children have inherited the extra genes and incorporated them into their ‘germline’ means that they will, in turn, be able to pass them on to their own offspring.

Altering the human germline – in effect tinkering with the very make-up of our species – is a technique shunned by the vast majority of the world’s scientists.

Geneticists fear that one day this method could be used to create new races of humans with extra, desired characteristics such as strength or high intelligence.

Writing in the journal Human Reproduction, the researchers, led by fertility pioneer Professor Jacques Cohen, say that this ‘is the first case of human germline genetic modification resulting in normal healthy children’.

Some experts severely criticised the experiments. Lord Winston, of the Hammersmith Hospital in West London, told the BBC yesterday: ‘Regarding the treat-ment of the infertile, there is no evidence that this technique is worth doing . . . I am very surprised that it was even carried out at this stage. It would certainly not be allowed in Britain.’

John Smeaton, national director of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children, said: ‘One has tremendous sympathy for couples who suffer infertility problems. But this seems to be a further illustration of the fact that the whole process of in vitro fertilisation as a means of conceiving babies leads to babies being regarded as objects on a production line.

‘It is a further and very worrying step down the wrong road for humanity.’ Professor Cohen and his colleagues diagnosed that the women were infertile because they had defects in tiny structures in their egg cells, called mitochondria.

The IRMS offers tons of infertility services: assisted hatching, egg donation, egg freezing, embryo transfer, genetic diagnostic testing and much more.

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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