Crop Biotech Update

Japanese Geneticists Favor New Policies for Genome Editing Applications, Survey

July 10, 2019

Kyoto University School of Public Health and partners conducted a survey to find out the attitudes of geneticists on genome editing and its clinical applications. The results are published in Nature's Journal of Human Genetics.

Genome editing is an emerging technology with a wide array of potential applications. For instance, CRISPR-Cas9 has the potential to prevent hereditary diseases from being transmitted to the following generations. Knowing the attitudes of genetic professionals towards this new technology is vital in preparation for changes and issues that need to be addressed.

Clinical geneticists and certified genetic counselors from all over Japan were asked to answer a survey questionnaire to reveal their attitudes towards genome editing. Results showed differences between the two groups in terms of their recognition of the technology and impressions on its difficulty and cost. Both groups expressed worry about the misuse of technology and insufficient information and rules. They said that academic policies and legislation are necessary, in line with the attitudes of professionals and the public.

Read more findings in the Journal of Human Genetics.