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Should scientists be able to modify human genes?

With CRISPR (Clustered Regularly-Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats) scientists can edit the DNA in human embryos for the first time, a process that was previously thought impossible and possibly unethical. Should we allow it?

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Science Summit Denounces Gene-Edited Babies Claim, But Rejects Moratorium

Scientists Say Gene-Edited Babies Claim Is 'Wake-Up Call' For World

Additional resources to think about

Pro and Con: Should Gene Editing Be Performed on Human Embryos? 
From National Geographic, two scientists list out the possible benefits and drawbacks of gene editing on humans.

How gene editing puts us in the driver's seat of evolution
Imagine you could edit a mouse’s genes to be resistant to Lyme Disease. The mouse would breed and evolution would take its course, leading to the extinction of the disease. That’s the vision for scientists developing CRISPR, technology that allows scientists to rewrite the code of life.

I Have A Rare Genetic Disease. CRISPR Might Fix It.
A Chicago journalist talks about a degenerative eye disease that she shares with her father. CRISPR technology could possibly fix it.

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Who created the message?

 

What kind of “text” is it?

How similar or different is it to others of the same genre?

What techniques are being used to grab my attention?

What do you notice? 

What’s the emotional appeal?

What makes it seem “real?”

How might different people think about the message?

How many other interpretations could there be?

How could we hear about them?

What points of view are being shown and left out?

 

What type of person do you identify with in the story?

What ideas or perspectives are left out?

How would you find what’s missing?

Why is the message being sent?

 

Who is served by or  benefits from the message
– the public?
– private interests?
– individuals?
– institutions?

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Should scientists be able to modify human genes?

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