NCER POSITION ON USE OF CRISPR-Cas9
Nebraska Coalition for Ethical Research encourages the continued use of CRISPR-Cas9 in animal research and in adult human cell cultures as a means toward its eventual safe and efficacious use for the correction of disease genes in adult human beings.
NCER agrees with the calls for a self-imposed moratorium and an international meeting on the use of CRISPR-Cas9 for germline genetic engineering on human embryos or human germ cells.
Regardless of the outcome of these initiatives, NCER strongly supports a permanent ban on the use of CRISPR-Cas9 for germline genetic engineering because it:
- Irresponsibly alters the human genome;
- Paves the way for designer human beings;
- Denies the child’s right to give consent to an experimental technique;
- Contributes to a eugenics culture that obliterates the basis for:
- Human equality, autonomy, and freedom
- Medicine and research that serves the human person, and
- Neighborly love and respect between persons
NCER also opposes the research use of CRISPR-Cas9 to edit genes in spare embryos. Despite its good goal—increased genetic knowledge of early embryonic development, this research constitutes an utilitarian, experimental use of embryonic human beings resulting in their direct destruction.
For further discussion of CRISPR-Cas9, please see NCER’s PowerPoint presentation.