Event: Ethics of Genome-Editing

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Few biotechnological achievements of the past have attracted as much attention as the recently developed tools of  genome-editing such as CRISPR/Cas9. By providing an easy-to-apply and easy-to-afford technique, this system has facilitated access to precise, hence successfully steerable manipulation of genome sequences. Genome-editing promises options with profound implications for human biology by, for example, correcting heritable disease mutations or editing human DNA to achieve specific enhancements. However, alongside it’s potentials recent gene-editing techniques also raises serious concerns about hazardous biological and social risks. That is true, in particular, since genetic modification could be passed on to future generations.  As the organizing committee for the widely recognized International Summit on Human Gene Editing, which took place in December 2015, concluded:

“While each nation ultimately has the authority to regulate activities under its jurisdiction, the human genome is shared among all nations. The international community should strive to establish norms concerning acceptable uses of human germline editing and to harmonize regulations, in order to discourage unacceptable activities while advancing human health and welfare.”


The All-day Joint Conference organized by the Ethics Centre, University of Jena, the New Thuringian Society for Philosophy and the Global Applied Ethics Institute addresses this challenge. By bringing together philosophical, social, scientific, and legal perspectives on techniques such as CRISPR/Cas9, it seeks to contribute towards to development of ethical principles for the application of human genome-editing.

When: November 21, 2016 | 9 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Where: Fuerstengraben 27 (“Großer Rosensaal”) | 07743 Jena, Germany
Contact: info@gaei.org | +49(0)3641 945 800

Global Applied Ethics Lecture: Sigrid Sterckx (Ghent, BE).

Speakers:  Wolfram Eberbach (Jena, GER), Nikolaus Knoepffler (Jena, GER), Christian Hübner (Jena, GER),  Albrecht Müller (Würzburg, GER), Nikolai Münch (Jena, GER), Robert Ranisch (Tübingen, GER), Bettina Schmietow (Nuffield Bioethics Council, UK).

Lectures will be held both in English and German language. Please find the program here.

We welcome students, academic, and non-academic auditors.

Image Source: Ronny Nawrodt via Flickr