CRISPR-baby scientist fails to satisfy critics
He Jiankui, a Chinese scientist who claims he helped to produce the first people born with edited genomes — twin baby girls — appeared today at a gene-editing summit in Hong Kong to explain his experiment. He delivered his talk amid threats of legal action and mounting questions, from the scientific community and beyond, about the ethics of his work.
He had never before presented his work publicly, outside a handful of videos he posted on YouTube. Scientists welcomed the fact that he appeared at all — but his talk left many hungry for more answers, and still not completely certain that He’s claims are accurate.
“There’s no reason not to believe him,” says Robin Lovell-Badge, a developmental biologist at the Francis Crick Institute in London. “I’m just not completely convinced.”