STAT

Alarmed by new ‘CRISPR babies’ plan, top science figures say they’re powerless to stop it

Outraged by a new plan to create "CRISPR babies" in Russia, leading science figures concede that their organizations are powerless to stop it.
Dr. Margaret Hamburg serves as co-chair of an international advisory committee on human genome-editing. Source: J. David Ake/AP

ASPEN, Colo. — Two influential leaders in science for the first time publicly condemned a Russian biologist who said he plans to produce gene-edited babies but conceded that it was beyond their organizations’ authority to halt him from doing so.

In separate interviews with STAT over the weekend, Margaret Hamburg, co-chair of an international advisory committee on human genome-editing, and Victor Dzau, president of the U.S. National Academy of Medicine, said they were deeply concerned by the plans outlined by Russian scientist Denis Rebrikov.

Still, said Hamburg, “I don’t know where we get the

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