Britain approves controversial gene-editing experiments

February 1, 2016 5:54 PM

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In a landmark decision that some ethicists warned is a step down the path toward "designer babies," Britain gave scientists approval Monday to conduct experiments in which they will try to edit the genes in human embryos.

The scientists won't be creating babies — the modified embryos will be destroyed after seven days. Instead, they said, the goal is to better understand human development and thereby improve fertility treatments and prevent miscarriages.

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