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Welcome to GMO 2.0, a new generation of genetic modification that promises even more than the previous GM technologies. Scientists using the "second generation" of genetic manipulation technology have used gene-editing to alter the DNA of breed of cattle so that they supposedly do not grow horns. At around the same time another group of scientists claim to have injected human cells into monkeys to create chimeras, who they say have increased intelligence. Earlier this year a group of Chinese researchers claimed to have deliberately gene-edited monkey clones with a mental disturbance.

Most will remember the Chinese scientist last year who shocked the world claiming to have genetically modified human embryos to be immune to HIV infection. What was shocking was not the science, which many experts claimed was underwhelming and sloppy, but the simple fact that he had undertaken this endeavor under the radar.

Few people realized then, but this incident has brought it home, that all this is taking place almost entirely without any serious health and safety regulation, nor have the ethical implications been fully explored. GMO 2.0 makes the process of genetic modification much simpler and, as a result, much more in reach for those with less training and understanding. It really seems like we're on the precipice of home genetic modification kits, designer babies and all the other horror stories science fiction has been warning us of for decades.

Join us on this episode of Objective:Health as we discuss the implications of this new gene tech. Do we really want to be on this train?

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Running Time: 01:08:29

Download: MP3 — 62.3 MB