A pioneering technique to ‘fix’ an embryo’s faulty DNA was unveiled by scientists last night. In a world first, they used gene-editing to cut out DNA from a fertilized egg. The embryo then repaired itself, replacing the mutated material with healthy cells. The technique worked on three-quarters of the 58 embryos it was tried on. It has the potential to revolutionize medicine and could lead to the eradication of inherited diseases such as cystic fibrosis and breast cancer.
Campaigners warned however that it might also open the door to ‘superior designer babies’, with genes modified to improve physical appearance, strength or even intelligence. ‘What concerns me most is that we will start making babies to order, and then expecting them to perform according to the way we have genetically designed them,’ said Dr David King, of the campaign group Human Genetics Alert. Other experts said the research was remarkable and had taken gene-editing from ‘future fantasy to the world of possibility’. Professor Simon Fishel, founder of Care Fertility, said: CONTINUE