HGGM: Where do you want to go?

Not sure if I have posted any comments on Human Germline Genetic Modification, since old age is wiping my memory.  (This could also be that in semi-retirement mode I choose not to recall.)  At any rate, I want to paste in a news story below.

The Gattaca test is almost here. When I say “Gattaca” I’m referring to the 1997 movie starring Ethan Hawke and Uma Thurman. In the film, according to IMDB, “A genetically inferior man assumes the identity of a superior one in order to pursue his lifelong dream of space travel.”

Of course, I am not concerned with space travel but I am concerned with genetics and genetic testing. Here’s why: News outlets reported this week that researchers have successfully genetically mapped a 18-week unborn child by taking a blood sample from the mother and a saliva sample by the father. Scientists are predicting that soon widespread use of prenatal genetic testing will make such tests a routine procedure in doctor’s offices, resulting in the identification of 3,500 potential genetic “faults” in an unborn child.

The article of course goes on to pick up many familiar refrains such as aborting girls when parents desire the birth of a boy.  The article even includes comments of a mother who has a child with cystic fibrosis, in effect saying he would have been aborted.

I personally take a view that the parents have waited way too long to either impregnate the mother or artificially impregnate the mother then perform genetic testing.  Engineer the child folks. 

Oh, I’ve frightened and pissed off many with that comment.  That day is a whole hell of a lot closer than you think friends.  It will happen.  You won’t even know it.  There will be a remarkably healthy and bright people who will appear amongst you and do great things.

 

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