Some Notable 2021 Blog Posts

Biopolitical Times
2021 on the road out

Following an annual Biopolitical Times tradition, we present a selection of our favorite posts of the past year. There are many more that are worth your time in the Biopolitical Times archive; scroll down and “VIEW MORE” as needed.

Heritable Human Genome Editing: Who Decides Who Decides?
Pete Shanks | 06.07.2021
The reports and convenings that together make up the “official” discussion of heritable genome editing have been organized by a remarkably small and overlapping group of people.

Dropping Limits, Pushing Envelopes: Stem cell research organization wants fewer rules
Marcy Darnovsky and Katie Hasson | 05.28.2021
The International Society of Stem Cell Research is recommending that research limitations such as the 14-day rule be loosened or rolled back, despite laws and regulations in many countries.

WHO Asserts Leadership on Human Genome Editing
Pete Shanks | 07.21.2021
The World Health Organization is asserting its moral leadership and making what appears to be a long-term commitment to an ongoing work program around gene editing and other emerging technologies.

Book Review: The Code Breaker
Gina Maranto | 04.05.2021
Walter Isaacson’s biography of Jennifer Doudna tends to glamorizes science and sees “the promise of CRISPR more clearly than the peril.”

The First Polygenic Risk Score Baby
Pete Shanks | 09.30.2021
The first child acknowledged to have been selected as an embryo on the basis of its supposed risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, and cancer as an adult was announced.

Book Review: Klara and the Sun
Anna Fang | 08.12.2021
Kazuo Ishiguro's latest dystopian novel depicts a future where harms emanating from artificial intelligence and human genome editing ripple among individuals, families, and communities.

Planning to Profit from Designer Babies. Now.
Pete Shanks | 05.25.2021
Two prominent groups of scientists at two major American universities are trying to patent methods for editing human embryos, with reproductive use clearly intended.

Updated Map of US Surrogacy Policies Highlights Patchwork of State Regulation
Emily Galpern | 11.17.2021
CGS partnered with the National Center for Lesbian Rights to provide at the most comprehensive representation of US surrogacy policy available online.

New Data Confirm the Need to Regulate the US Assisted Reproduction Industry
Pete Shanks | 02.10.2021
Analysis of the latest Centers for Disease Control report on US fertility clinics confirms the limitations of current law, while clinics expand the sale of expensive, unregulated techniques.

Victory for Reproductive Justice in California
Emily Galpern | 07.13.2021
The new state budget includes reparations for survivors of eugenic sterilization, up to $25,000 per survivor plus funds to raise awareness about this unjust history.

Book Review: Pure America
Anne Rumberger | 08.10.2021
Elizabeth Catte explores the history and the endurance of eugenic beliefs in Virginia, opening a window into the historic and lingering national obsession with these ideas.

Britney Spears is Yet Another Victim of America's Eugenics Movement
Connor McAlister | 07.08.2021
Her conservatorship and her forced IUD have made her the latest victim of a long history of reproductive oppression of those deemed “undesirable.”

The Biden Administration and Genetically Engineered Bioweapons Research
Gwen D’Arcangelis | 01.07.2021
The incoming Biden-Harris administration promises a restoration of the role of science in government, but we need more than a “return to normal,” especially in gene editing and bioweapons.

Remembering Richard Lewontin (1929-2021)
Stuart Newman | 07.06.2021
Richard Lewontin made an indelible mark on evolutionary biology. His death is a personal loss, and one that leaves an empty space in world science.

Australia’s Parliament Should Maintain the Laws that Prohibit "Mitochondrial Donation"Katherine Drabiak | 03.11.2021
The Australian Health Minister announced plans to introduce legislation that would modify the laws currently prohibiting three-person IVF.

Things We Are (Nearly, Perhaps) Able to Do with Human Embryos
Pete Shanks | 03.23.2021
At least five separate studies involving embryo research in humans and mice are raising fresh versions of old questions about science, ethics, and regulation.