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Nuffeild council on bioethics

The Consensus Study Report of the International Commission on the Clinical Use of Human Germline Genome Editing convened by the US National Academies of Medicine and Sciences and the UK’s Royal Society was published on 3 September.

Heritable human genome editing is a substantial report and stands as a worthy contribution to discussion of heritable human genome editing (HHGE) in the English-speaking world alongside the National Academies’ earlier (and broader) report, Human Genome Editing, science, ethics, and governance (2017) and our own Nuffield Council report, Genome editing and human reproduction: social and ethical issues (2018).

There are many good things about this report. It is clear, thoughtful and detailed. The Commission has bent itself earnestly to fulfilling the task given to it by the commissioning academies. The coverage of the current state of the science, the prospects for the use of HHGE in the clinic, and the presentation of its potential applications manages to be both thorough and readable. It strives constantly to keep its feet on the ground, both through repeated reference to the technical uncertainties that should still... see more