Egg donation for gene editing in embryos expose women to health risks


Current gene editing approaches allow for precise modification of DNA. These could potentially be used to correct disease-causing genes in human embryos.To evaluate the safety and efficacy of this approach, a large number of studies would be needed. To create embryos for this purpose, women have to donate eggs. In a recent Nature correspondence, two researchers from Uppsala University, Emilia Niemiec and Heidi Howard, draw attention to the health risks associated with egg donation in this context. 

Emilia Niemiec and Heidi Howard argue that the serious health risks associated with egg donation, the burden placed on the women who undergo this procedure, and the related ethical issues should be acknowledged and considered when discussing potential clinical uses of gene editing and related research. They stress that egg donors and potential egg donors should be actively engaged in the debate around gene editing.

Both authors are part of SIENNA's Human Genomics work stream.

Read more in Nature

By Anna Holm