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Is it possible to design babies to suit parents? Although it seems science fiction, technically, we are much closer than it seems. Science is very close to having the tools to make it possible.
However, there is an ethical dilemma that forces all citizens to participate in the conversation and it is for this reason that we decided to expose this topic that can become so controversial.
Biomedical scientist Paul Knoepfler estimates that embryo upgrades will be possible in less than 15 years, as he stated at a Ted Conference held in Vienna in late 2015. The technology called CRISPR is according to him, a kind of Swiss army knife allows detecting what happens within the genetic code of an embryo, remove parts and "rewrite" others.
This will make it possible to eliminate genetically transmitted diseases, for example, but also to determine that a baby is blonde or brown, tall or short, and super smart. Until now, in many countries there is no regulation in this regard, therefore, it is to be expected that, unless all humanity agrees, that there are “genetic paradises” where for several thousand or millions of dollars, this selection is carried out.
And as Paul Knoepfler argued in his lecture, we may not agree with these practices, but if other people do have “designed” babies anyway, the world will become a very strange place.
During the TED Conference, Knoepfler wonders how we will feel as parents if other children are definitely cute, athletic and intelligent and at the same time how our children will feel next to super fabulous companions. And it goes even further and questions whether these exceptional children will be able to attend a common school or will it be necessary to create special institutions for these super children.
And at the same time, how knowing they are so special will affect the temperament of these boys. What will become of his ego and his narcissism? 60 or 70 years ago we were horrified by the belief of a superior race as postulated by Nazism, but today humans are indeed close to being able to make it happen.
Knoepfler raises yet another question: What if governments themselves are tempted to encourage the use of this scientific technology in order to cut health spending? Because obviously if the boys are born healthy and with probabilities of developing certain diseases the health costs will be lower. Right now the scientific communities of the world are debating these issues. I think it's good that for a moment the rest of us leave our daily tasks and stop to reflect. Because as Michio Kaku puts it in "The Physics of the Future", the generations that live in the present are the most important that have stepped on the earth's surface, "because they are the ones that will determine if we reach the type I civilization or if we fall into the abyss"
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