We are on the verge of a revolution whose consequences last we can't even imagine. The accumulated knowledge in biology and genetics will allow, as explained by the historian Yuval Noah Harari, Homo Sapiens becoming a species of Homo Deus, able to determine their own biological destiny. You will be able to alter the genetic heritage of any species, including humans, and on the horizon is the possibility of creating human genetically enhanced. But to open those doors must be very sure that you comply with two important requirements: that there is a clear consensus on the desirability of doing so because it provides benefits indisputable, and that can be done with security assurances. In science, not everything that is possible is desirable, but if we come to the conclusion that what is must be possible to do so in conditions which respect the principle of non-maleficence.
I have Jianchui has shown that it is possible to intervene at the embryonic level to turn off the gene that allows the aids virus to colonize and neutralize the immune system of the infected person and to make that protection is passed on to the offspring. But it has been released to the experiment without taking into account the limitations that still has the technique and without being able to ensure that will not have adverse effects.
Go beyond that in order to play god involves many risks, as do the scientists know better than anyone else. It is not by chance that exists in the scientific community a general consensus that prohibits applying genetic modifications to the germ cells. It is one thing to cause a genetic alteration that only have consequences on the individual on which it is applied, and quite another to do it so that their effects can be transmitted to the offspring, which is what he has done for the first time that we know and absolutely irresponsible geneticist I have Jianchui.
William Betenson, the scientist who coined the term genetics, already predicted at the beginning of the TWENTIETH century that “the exact determination of the laws of inheritance will lead to more changes in the attitude of man toward the world and his mastery of nature that no other progress that can be achieved”. We are on the verge of a great revolution. The temptation to seek shortcuts to achieve glory and wealth will be increasingly strong. That is why it is important that the consensus of prudence that there is now to be translated into applicable legislation throughout the world.Updated Date: 30 December 2019, 21:00