If we were to modify babies before birth to make them the healthiest and most resilient humans possible, should we and how far are we really willing to go?
Genetically manipulating babies before birth to avoid and prevent diseases is closer than you think. Thanks to the recent development of CRISPR, genetic engineering DNA has become much cheaper, faster and more precise than ever before. If we can save a life, prevent suffering and improve health, why wouldn't we genetically modify babies?
What makes this a difficult discussion is the ambiguity of what 'healthy' is. How far are we willing to go to create the healthiest babies? Currently, over 90% of people when informed that their child has Down Syndrome choose to terminate their pregnancy. But would this also be the case for something such as eye colour, as there is clear scientific evidence suggesting that people with blue coloured irises are ten times more likely to develop eyesight problems and have a greater risk of developing eye cancer in later life.
My aim is to create a dialogue around such decisions and encourage public debate as to how far as a society we really want, or should, go.
Would you genetically engineer your baby to be the healthiest?