bioethics bioethics
Stories About

bioethics

As scientists learn more about the complex way genes combine and work together to create human traits, the idea of "designer babies" becomes less and less likely. BlackJack3D/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
BlackJack3D/Getty Images

Why Making A 'Designer Baby' Would Be Easier Said Than Done

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/719665841/719737209" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Will computers alienate us from the healing touch? Chris Nickels for NPR hide caption

toggle caption
Chris Nickels for NPR

As Artificial Intelligence Moves Into Medicine, The Human Touch Could Be A Casualty

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/718413798/718735503" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Google is looking to artificial intelligence as a way to make a mark in health care. Michael Short/Bloomberg via Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Michael Short/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Google Searches For Ways To Put Artificial Intelligence To Use In Health Care

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/712778514/716096525" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

CRISPR gene-editing technology allows scientists to make highly precise modifications to DNA. The technology is now starting to be used in human trials to treat several diseases in the U.S. Molekuul/Getty Images/Science Photo Library hide caption

toggle caption
Molekuul/Getty Images/Science Photo Library

First U.S. Patients Treated With CRISPR As Human Gene-Editing Trials Get Underway

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/712402435/714091334" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Scientists around the world criticized Chinese researcher He Jiankui's experimental editing of DNA in embryos that became twin girls. Anthony Wallace/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Anthony Wallace/AFP/Getty Images

Dieter Egli, a developmental biologist at Columbia University, and Katherine Palmerola examine a newly fertilized egg injected with a CRISPR editing tool. Rob Stein/NPR hide caption

toggle caption
Rob Stein/NPR

New U.S. Experiments Aim To Create Gene-Edited Human Embryos

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/689623550/690603652" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

There has been a backlash since Chinese scientist He Jiankui's claim that he edited genes in embryos that became twin girls. Anthony Wallace/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Anthony Wallace/AFP/Getty Images

Outrage Intensifies Over Claims Of Gene-Edited Babies

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/673878474/674488066" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

American biologist David Baltimore criticized a fellow scientist who claims he has edited the genes human embryos during the Second International Summit on Human Genome Editing at the University of Hong Kong. China News Service/VCG via Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
China News Service/VCG via Getty Images

Science Summit Denounces Gene-Edited Babies Claim, But Rejects Moratorium

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/671657301/671996790" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Researcher He Jiankui spoke Wednesday during the 2nd International Summit on Human Genome Editing in Hong Kong. Kin Cheung/AP hide caption

toggle caption
Kin Cheung/AP

Facing Backlash, Chinese Scientist Defends Gene-Editing Research On Babies

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/671375070/671429611" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Genetics researcher He Jiankui said his lab considered ethical issues before deciding to proceed with DNA editing of human embryos to create twin girls with a modification to reduce their risk of HIV infection. Critics say the experiment was premature. Mark Schiefelbein/AP hide caption

toggle caption
Mark Schiefelbein/AP

Chinese Scientist Says He's First To Create Genetically Modified Babies Using CRISPR

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/670752865/670752866" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

DNA sleuthing helped identify Joseph James DeAngelo, the suspected East Area Rapist, who was arraigned in a Sacramento, Calif., courtroom in April. Randy Pench/Sacramento Bee/TNS via Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Randy Pench/Sacramento Bee/TNS via Getty Images

Easy DNA Identifications With Genealogy Databases Raise Privacy Concerns

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/656268742/656682250" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Immature human eggs (pink) were created by Japanese researchers using stem cells that were derived from blood cells. Courtesy of Saitou Lab hide caption

toggle caption
Courtesy of Saitou Lab

Scientists Create Immature Human Eggs From Stem Cells

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/649552734/650052907" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
Marina Muun for NPR

Her Son Is One Of The Few Children To Have 3 Parents' DNA

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/616334508/617676409" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

A scientist from the Nadiya Clinic in Kiev, Ukraine inserts a needle into a fertilized egg to extract the DNA of a man and woman trying to have a baby. The clinic is combining the DNA from three different people to create babies for women who are infertile. Rob Stein/NPR hide caption

toggle caption
Rob Stein/NPR

Clinic Claims Success In Making Babies With 3 Parents' DNA

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/615909572/617422957" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Scientists placed two clusters of cultured forebrain cells side by side (each cluster the size of a head of a pin) in the lab. Within days, the minibrains had fused and particular neurons (in green) migrated from the left side to the right side, as groups of cells do in a real brain. Courtesy of Pasca lab/Stanford University hide caption

toggle caption
Courtesy of Pasca lab/Stanford University

Tiny Lab-Grown 'Brains' Raise Big Ethical Questions

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/605331749/605839638" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript