After watching the interview with Professor George Church, I wanted to ask him to make a prediction of his own for the future of human genomics and CRISPR: does he believe that human genome reading and editing will be commonplace in the future as a vehicle for diagnosing and preemptively fixing potentially life-threating genetic disorders and diseases? What does he believe are the ethics of that in terms of differences in access between countries and different income levels? Does he believe that genomics in the future will reach a level where human genomes can be modified to pick for specific physical traits with a high degree of certainty or even enhance certain traits (such as intelligence, etc.), and how the mere existence of that technology would affect human society?
top of page
bottom of page
Jaron, these are really interesting questions that I'd love to hear George Church's answers to. In light of the Ben Shneiderman interview, in which he encourages a more nuanced and realistic view of the future of AI, your post makes me wonder how someone like Professor Church thinks about the future of human genomics. Like AI may be overestimated in the popular imagination, are the possibilities of gene editing also overestimated? If so, why? Again drawing from a comment made by Ben Shneiderman, will we look back in a number of years and laugh at our concerns over the ethics and regulation of genomics editing if today's predictions don't come to pass?