China suspends scientist who tweaked human gene

Dec 01, 2018, 09:52 IST | Agencies

"The case, as media have reported, is a blatant violation of China's laws and regulations, and it breaks the bottom line of academic morality and ethics," said Xu Nanping, vice-minister of science and technology

China suspends scientist who tweaked human gene
He Jiankui. Pic/AFP

A Chinese researcher, who claimed to have created the world's first gene-edited babies that are resistant to HIV, has been suspended from any scientific activity amid mounting criticism at home and abroad about the controversial experiment, according to media reports.

In a fertilised human-egg cell, the scientist, He Jiankui, intends to make a person resistant to HIV by disabling a gene that forms a protein doorway allowing the virus to enter the body. "The case, as media have reported, is a blatant violation of China's laws and regulations, and it breaks the bottom line of academic morality and ethics," said Xu Nanping, vice-minister of science and technology.

"It's shocking and unacceptable," Xu was quoted as saying in the interview. Xu said the ministry had ordered authorities to suspend all scientific activity of people involved with the case and mete out punishments after an ongoing investigation.

He, an associate professor at the Shenzhen-based Southern University of Science and Technology, announced on Monday that twin girls, Lulu and Nana, were born healthy earlier this month after in vitro fertilisation (IVF). Gene-editing technology had been used to immunise them from HIV, he claimed. The news aroused widespread criticism, both for its ethics, flaws and the necessity of such a procedure to prevent AIDS.

Catch up on all the latest Crime, National, International and Hatke news here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates

This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

DISCLAIMER: mid-day and its affiliates shall have no liability for any views, thoughts and comments expressed on this article.

Everything you need to know about the newly crowned Miss World 2018

This website uses cookie or similar technologies, to enhance your browsing experience and provide personalised recommendations. By continuing to use our website, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy. OK