Charting CRISPR ethical landscape

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More than 60 germline ethics statements have been released by the international community so far (Italy is not included in the figure). Carolyn Brokowski, from the Yale School of Medicine, read and analyzed them all in The CRISPR Journal. A glance at her pie chart reveals a snapshot of ​the experts’ opinions on the moral permissibility of heritable genome editing.

54% of the reports consider germline editing impermissible at the current time, but 11% do not exclude the possibility of allowing it under certain conditions, and 5% are open to further exploration. Reading the full text is highly recommended. According to the author, inconsistencies and ambiguities abound, but this is unsurprising: “The proliferation of dozens of ethics statements seems like a reasonable first step toward solidifying and formalizing the global community’s concerns” that are set to inspire the development of national and international laws. CRISPR ethical landscape is moving, and Brokowski’s analysis shows that there is still a long way to go.


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