Designer Babies

The technologies are going to be accessible to affluent couples and would be used in ways that could increase inequality. The last thing we need now is a genetic elite - Richard Hayes

Designer Babies

image by: Rasmus Svinding

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Designer Babies, Technophobia and Scientific Responsibility

The term itself smacks of both haute couture and dystopian horror, a likely foreshadowing of the combination of popularity and controversy to come. "Designer babies," they're being called, and they're coming to a womb near you.

The term designer babies dates back at least as far as the turn of the millennium, when bioethics professor Glenn McGee, author of The Perfect Baby: A Pragmatic Approach to Genetics, addressed an array of looming biotechnology-based controversies.

But the writing was on the wall much earlier. Debates about eugenics began over a century earlier (long before the Nazis got a hold of the idea). Then came the discovery and increasingly better understanding…

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Last Updated : Tuesday, March 14, 2017