He Jiankui and Two Others Sentenced for Genetically Edited Babies
OVER THE LINE
Three Chinese researchers involved in the 2018 births of genetically edited babies have been convicted and sentenced for practicing medicine illegally. Chinese state media said Monday that lead researcher He Jiankui was sentenced to three years and fined 3 million yuan ($430,000). Two others received lesser sentences and fines. He, the lead researcher, announced in November 2018 that he had helped make the world’s first genetically edited babies, twin girls born in the same month. He said he had used a tool called CRISPR to alter a gene in embryos to try to help them resist infection with HIV. Chinese state media said the researchers were involved in the births of three gene-edited babies to two women. The court said the three researchers had not obtained qualification as doctors to practice medicine, pursued fame and profits, deliberately violated Chinese regulations on scientific research, and crossed an ethical line in both scientific research and medicine.