Réglementation sur le patrimoine génétique

CLEVELAND – Depuis des milliers d'années, les humains utilisent la génétique pour contrôler l'évolution des plantes et des animaux. Il est donc inévitable que nous l'utilisions pour façonner notre propre évolution. Nos efforts ont jusqu'à présent été modestes : certains sites de rencontres en ligne ont commencé à associer leurs abonnés en fonction de leur compatibilité génétique. Les parents passent de plus en plus au crible les embryons et les fœtus, et ne laissent naître que ceux qui ont les gènes les plus sains. Les généticiens n'améliorent que lentement leur capacité à manipuler directement l'ADN et personne n'essaie d'apporter de modifications à la lignée germinale chez les humains, qui seraient alors transmises aux générations suivantes.

La technologie complète du génie l'ingénierie de l'évolution humaine est encore loin d'être atteinte, mais elle peut devenir courante. Le défi pour l'humanité est double : survivre assez longtemps pour atteindre cette étape, et causer le moindre mal possible en y arrivant.

Les personnes les plus à risque dans l'immédiat sont les enfants, qui sont en danger de voir leur matériel génétique manipulé d'une manière préjudiciable. Le préjudice peut être physique (mort-nés, malformations et maladiesgénétiques). Mais même le génie génétique techniquement réussi peut causer des souffrances psychosociales à des enfants qui risquent d'être rejetés par leurs pairs, comme étant « bizarres » ou simplement « différents ».

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