World first: China performs “chemical embryo surgery”

Sep 28, 2017, 6:41 AM EDT

In a world first, a team of researchers at Sun Yat-sen University in China have carried out a precise “chemical surgery” on human embryos, successfully ridding them of a potentially life-threatening blood disorder called beta-thalassemia.

The development opens new avenues for curing genetic diseases by base editor system, an advanced version of the revolutionary gene-editing technique, CRISPR, writes the BBC.

The chemical surgery approach has fewer unwanted side-effects than CRISPR but the development also fuels moral and societal debate over humans’ ability to take control of DNA makeup, notes The Real News.