Dr. Robert Klitzman, M.D., Academic Director of the M.S. in Bioethics program, called the regulatory response to the proliferation of gene editing technology “behind the curve” in a recent podcast from the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs.
In the first of a series of conversations on the ethical implications of genetic engineering for the Carnegie Council Audio Podcast, Dr. Klitzman provided an overview on recent developments in gene editing, including Chinese scientist He Jiankui’s claim, in 2018, that he altered the DNA of human twins during in-vitro fertilization (IVF).
“Our ability to think through issues of the ethical, legal, social, and regulatory implications has been lacking,” said Dr. Klitzman, whose book Designing Babies: How Technology is Changing the Ways We Create Children was published in October. “We are still struggling to catch up and figure out what should the regulatory framework be.”
Invoking Nazi eugenics and the dystopian future depicted in the 1997 film Gattaca, Dr. Klitzman said, “That technology is already here,” and warned that continued failure to regulate the IVF industry “bodes poorly for our future ability to govern it and oversee it.”