A free-to-attend online event about the science, medicine, ethics and regulation of genome editing and epigenome editing.
This event is produced by the Progress Educational Trust (PET) in partnership with Cambridge Reproduction (based at the University of Cambridge), with additional sponsorship from the Anne McLaren Memorial Trust Fund and the Association of Reproductive and Clinical Scientists.
The event will be chaired jointly by Professor Robin Lovell-Badge and Sarah Norcross, with speakers including Katherine Littler, Professor Kathy Niakan, Professor Wolf Reik, Professor Henry Greely and Nick Meade.
This PET event will see experts and advocates – including a representative of the WHO – address questions including:
- What can the use of genome editing in basic research tell us about human developmental biology?
- What else can realistically be achieved with human genome editing at present? What might be achieved in future?
- What are the similarities and differences between different categories of human genome editing – for example, somatic vs germline and research vs treatment – and how should genome editing in each of these categories be pursued and regulated?
- Where does epigenome editing fit into these categories? Should it be considered heritable (because it can potentially result in changes that are inherited), or is this misleading (because in theory these changes can always be reversed)?
- To what extent is it feasible to monitor and regulate human genome (and epigenome) editing internationally, as well as nationally? How might this be achieved?
- What lessons can be learned from the scandal that surrounded the inappropriate clinical use of human germline genome editing in China? How, if at all, might we decide that the time is right to permit (appropriately regulated) clinical uses of germline genome editing?
- How can we distinguish between reality and hype in the field of human somatic genome editing? How might we ensure that the benefits of somatic genome editing are made available, safely and equitably, across the globe?
- What do patients and the wider public think about these issues? How can they make their voice heard?