A CONTROVERSIAL Chinese scientist really did create the world’s first gene-edited babies, arrogantly ignoring national rules and dodging surveillance in a quest for fame and fortune, investigators have confirmed. He Jiankui’s experiment – branded “monstrous” by some researchers – led to the birth of gene-edited twin girls nicknamed Lulu and Nana. Jiankui announced the birth of the babies, which have altered DNA that protects them against HIV, the AIDS virus, in November, sparking an intense investigation into his claims. This type of science is banned in most countries – including the UK – because it’s often considered unethical and unsafe. Now officials in Beijing have concluded the mad scientist’s shock claims are true – meaning he broke a host of Chinese laws around DNA tinkering. Jiankui has been fired from his research job at China’s Southern University of Science and Technology as a result of the finding. Investigators say the scientist “intentionally avoided surveillance” and forged key paperwork to carry out the sick experiments, according to the state-run Xinhua news agency. He “used technology of uncertain safety and effectiveness to perform human embryo gene-editing activity with the purpose of reproduction, which is officially banned in the country”. Between March 2017 and November 2018, Jiankui recruited… Read full this story
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