Journalists heard from the co-chairs and commissioners of the International Commission on the Clinical Use of Human Germline Genome Editing as they launched their report defining a responsible pathway for the clinical use of heritable human genome editing, should a decision be made by any nation to permit its use.
The Commission was formed in the aftermath of the 2018 International Summit on Human Genome Editing held in Hong Kong, where a researcher from China announced that twins had been born following editing he had performed on early embryos, despite broad agreement in the scientific and clinical communities that it was premature and irresponsible to undertake heritable human genome editing.
It comprises 18 representatives from 10 nations with expertise in genome editing technology; human genetics and genomics; reproductive, paediatric, and adult medicine; regulatory science; bioethics; and international law.
The US National Academies and the Royal Society are the secretariat of the Commission.
Prof Dame Kay Davies, D.Phil., Co-Chair of the Commission and Professor of Genetics, University of Oxford, UK
Prof Richard Lifton, M.D., Ph.D., Co-Chair of the Commission and President, The Rockefeller University, USA
Prof Michèle Ramsay, Ph.D., Director and Research Chair, Sydney Brenner Institute for Molecular Bioscience, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa
Prof Haoyi Wang, Ph.D., State Key Laboratory of Stem Cell and Reproductive Biology, Institute of Zoology, Institute for Stem Cell and Regeneration, Chinese Academy of Sciences, P.R. China
An SMC Roundup of Comments accompanied this briefing.