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Most Americans are in favor of using gene-editing technology to create babies protected against incurable or fatal diseases such as cystic fibrosis or Huntington's, but they draw the line at designer babies.
A new poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research found 7 in 10 people are also OK with the idea of preventing the likes of cancer and other diseases developing later in life.
Aspects - Research - Children - Smarter - Taller
However many admitted there could be negative aspects of beginning research as it could be abused by those wanting their children born smarter, faster, taller or even with a certain eye color.
A sample was drawn from NORC's probability-based AmeriSpeak Panel, which is designed to be representative of the US population.
Respondents - Sampling - Methods - Online - Phone
Respondents were first selected randomly using address-based sampling methods, and later interviewed online or by phone.
A whopping 85 percent believed that the possibility of the wrong part of cells being edited was quite likely.
Gene - Lets - Scientists - Section - DNA
Gene editing lets scientists snip out a section of DNA to delete, replace or repair a gene.
Altering adult cells would affect only the patient being treated but editing genes in eggs, sperm or embryos would alter the resulting child in ways that can be passed to future generations.
International - Science - Guidelines - Pregnancies - Research
International science guidelines say it shouldn't be tested in human pregnancies until more lab-based research determines it's safe to try.
But with the poll being carried out a month after startling claims of the world's first gene-edited babies being born in China, about a third thought this kind of gene editing could be used even before it's adequately tested.
Scientists - News - Shenzhen - China - Guangdong
It's what many scientists have claimed about the recent news from Shenzhen in southern China's Guangdong province, where it was reported the procedure was used to try to create babies resistant to HIV infection.
However there was outrage because there are...
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