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People in everyday, non-scientific professions like plumbing, baking and teaching should be consulted about gene editing, a group of experts say

by Chester Bonilla (2020-10-31)


People in everyday, non-scientific professions like plumbing, baking and teaching should be consulted about gene editing, a group of experts say.

Much like how criminal court cases have a jury composed of normal people, global citizens' assemblies should let laypersons have their say on the controversial technology. 

Gene editing is thought to have potential to prevent conditions such as sickle cell disease, cystic fibrosis and some forms of cancer. 

But the technology could potentially create unintended and permanent genetic mutations that would be passed down for generations, weakening humankind. 

Genetic enhancements could also safeguard important crops like potatoes and corn from disease and end world hunger - or alternately create weird 'Frankenstein foods'. 

Ethical and social implications of powerful gene-altering technology are too important to be left to scientists and politicians, the team of experts argue in their research paper, published in Calling all plumbers! Implications of gene editing are believed to be so important that they should be examined not just by those in the field, but by the general public too, experts say