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About Medical Gene Transfer


Sometimes called "gene therapy," medical gene transfer involves adding or modifying genes in a person's cells (other than those found in his or her sperm or eggs). The "new" genes are intended to function in ways that would alleviate a medical condition. They would not be passed on to any future generations.


Arguments Pro & Con

Gene transfer may eventually become an effective treatment for some important medical conditions. Clinical trials have been underway since 1990, but so far have been mostly unsuccessful, involved several conflict-of-interest scandals, and produced adverse results including deaths.

Gene transfer has also been proposed for "enhancement" purposes. This application could raise troubling social and ethical questions.



CRISPR Patent Fight Now a Winner-Take-All Matchby Antonio RegaladoMIT Technology ReviewApril 15th, 2015Lab notebooks could determine who was first to invent a revolutionary gene-editing technology.
A NASA Scientist Is Behind the 'My DNA Was Planted' Viral Craigslist Adby Kari PaulMotherboardApril 14th, 2015A Craigslist ad thoug​ht to be covert advertising is actually an experimental post that evolved into a form of performance art, according to the NASA scientist who created it
Genome Editing: Time to Ask the Tough Questionsby Silvia CamporesiThe Huffington PostApril 14th, 2015It is a bit disheartening that we seem not to have made any progress when it comes to governing science in 40 years, and that we refer to Asilomar as the exemplar of practice of governing science.
Genetic Engineering & The Future of Humankindby Jamie MetzlIvy MagazineApril 9th, 2015Were on the verge of this fundamental transformation, not just of our reproductive processes, but of how we think of ourselves as humans.
The Next Manhattan Projectby Patrick TuckerThe AtlanticApril 7th, 2015Anticipating cutting-edge scientific research before it happens may be key to protecting against bioterrorism.
Genetic Engineering, Humankind Creeps Toward A 'Planet Of The Apes' by Laurent AlexandreWorld CrunchApril 7th, 2015The astounding developments in nanotechnology, biotechnology, information technology and cognitive science are posing problems that we thought only existed in science fiction.
Human Genetic Engineering Demands more than a Moratoriumby Sheila Jasanoff, J. Benjamin Hurlbut and Krishanu SahaThe GuardianApril 7th, 2015Expert calls for a moratorium on germline gene engineering are no substitute for richer public debate on the ethics and politics of our biotechnological futures.
Why is the Scientific World Abuzz about an Unpublished Paper? Because it Could Permanently Change Human DNAby Ashley CsanadyNational PostApril 6th, 2015Scientists around the world are anticipating the results of a Chinese study that would mark the first time DNA in a human embryo has been modified in a way that would carry into future generations.
Who Owns CRISPR?by Jenny RoodThe ScientistApril 3rd, 2015The technology seems so powerful, the technology seems so profitable, and the intellectual property issues seem so irreconcilable that its a big mystery as to whats going to happen.
Whos Getting Rich Off Your Genes?by Patricia J. WilliamsThe NationApril 3rd, 2015The post-war aversion to eugenics the understanding that despite great variability from one human to another, no one life is worth more than another has eroded.
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