Modifying Humans: Is Global Governance of Genome Editing Possible?

CRISPR-Cas9 and other genome editing tools present researchers with a double-edged capacity to produce great medical advancements and grave harm. Given the promise and perils associated with this powerful new technology, is the global governance of human genome editing desirable? Is it possible? Recently, the World Health Organization (WHO) convened an expert advisory committee on developing global standards for governance and oversight of human genome editing, including somatic as well as germline and heritable approaches. Robin Lovell-Badge served on this WHO committee, bringing his scientific expertise as the head of the Laboratory of Stem Cell Biology and Developmental Genetics at the Francis Crick Institute. Dr. Lovell-Badge also recently chaired an international task force for the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) which updated the ISSCR guidelines on genome editing research. Both these efforts suggest that a global governance framework is possible. But what challenges lie ahead?

In this interactive session, Dr. Lovell-Badge and Dr. Hyun will lead the audience through a discussion of the scientific, ethical, and policy considerations raised by efforts to successfully implement oversight and governance.

September 17, 2021 Ethics in Research and Biotechnology Consortia bioethics.hms.harvard.edu

Presented by Robin Lovell-Badge, PhD Senior Group Leader, The Francis Crick Institute, UK

Moderated by Insoo Hyun, PhD Director of Research Ethics, Center for Bioethics, Harvard Medical School Professor of Bioethics, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine