Genetic Marvels: Fixing the broken

Scientists have now altered an embryonic gene, promising another option to eliminate hereditary diseases, not only for the resulting baby but for generations to come. Thus. young athletes would be spared the dangers of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, a disease that affects 1 in 500 people and causes athletes just hitting their stride to suddenly die mid-pass or mid-leap. It may also eliminate dwarfism, cystic fibrosis, hemophilia, and Tay-Sachs. If it’s used responsibly.

Unfortunately, we humans have a tendency to botch things on a grand scale, leading from what could have been a wonderful discovery to a human or biospheric calamity. I wrote the story, “A New Pair of Genes,” over 15 years ago. You can read it on my “Read a Chapter” page. Then decide if morals can keep up with well-intentioned science.

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