Did you know that in the US birth defects affect one in every 33 babies (about 3% of all babies) born in the United States each year? Birth defects are the leading cause of infant deaths, accounting for 20% of all infant death in the US (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 21 Sept. 2016). Thalassemia is a blood disorder that babies are born with, it has major impacts on the child. Children who have the severe forms of the disease have to deal with a lot, physically and psychologically. Physically, thalassemia patients suffer from enlargement of the spleen, liver, heart. Their bones become brittle and many will eventually be diagnosed with osteoporosis.(About Thalassemia.” Thalassemia Support Foundation ) Additionally, the bones in the face could become distorted. Recently Chinese scientists in Sun Yat-Sen University China have taken a new approach in helping eradicate diseases in babies by genetically modifying thalassemia out of an embryo. Although the Chinese experiment proved genetic engineering could be used in embryos, it also caused numerous unintended, effects on parts of the genome. These changes could lead to other complications, some of which could be fatal.The experiment leads to a lot of controversy around the world. There are various opinions on the exploration of genetically modifying the embryo. Some of which are the perspectives of parents, genetic counsellors and the Chinese scientists themselves. In this essay, we will discuss the various perspectives on this issue and what influences their beliefs. If they Chinese scientists were able to successfully extract thalassemia they could potentially be able to do this with other birth defects and severe genetic diseases. Faith and Ethics play a big part in shaping our perspectives on a topic especially one like this. As we continue to discuss the various perspectives perhaps you will be able to form your opinion on the experiments. Joy Larsen Haidle is a genetic counsellor and has been for many years, during the gene editing summit in DC she raised her concern about the wrongful experiments performed in China on the human embryo. “In my opinion, the data is not there to say the use of CRISPR in humans is safe or reliable,” Joy Larsen Haidle, president of the National Society of Genetic Counselors, told Business Insider previously. Furthermore, “do we risk causing a different problem we didn’t anticipate? (Tanya Lewis Business Insider, Dec. 2015) She could hold this perspective as she is a genetic counsellor and she is told to advise her clients on the safest option to avoid risking her patient’s lives. She is also a Christian and this could influence her thoughts on the sanctity of life as she sees that the experiment was slightly unsafe and dangerous and refuses to observe its potential until proven safe by visual evidence. “To create embryos with the intention of destroying them, even with the intention of helping the sick, is completely incompatible with human dignity.” is quoted from the Christian Vatican bioethics reference of the Dignitas personae also known as the dignity of a person. This proves that Christians should believe that the experiment was wrong as it had the possibility of risking a life even though it was of good intentions to eradicate the disease. Haidle’s perspective could be largely based of her belief in christianity therefore influencing her that any possible risk of taking a life is completely wrong. The consequences of her raising her concern are that many scientists agree with her and it could prevent people from experimenting with genetic modification of diseases in human embryos in the future, furthermore causing a limited amount of knowledge about genetic engineering and exploration of its potential. On the other hand, Sarah Gray of the American Association of Tissue Banks was one of those who spoke up at the meeting arguing that exploration should be encouraged, after all, in the end, the experiment was successful in eradicating a fatal life-changing disease. Her son died of a fatal genetic disease six days after he was born, after suffering terrible seizures. As Sharon Begley reported in STAT, Gray told the attendees, “If you have the skills and the knowledge to eliminate these diseases, then frickin’ do it!” (Tanya Lewis Business Insider, Dec. 2015) As a parent Gray expresses her perspective as a matter of self-interest as she has first handedly experienced her child being affected by a birth defect, therefore, causing her to believe that any possible genetic engineering that can eradicate this disease should be done to avoid the unfair and disadvantaged life of a child born with defects. The implications are that more parents could be alerted to the fact that children’s lives could be saved by genetically engineering the genetic mutation out of their DNA when they are still an embryo. This could cause a large demand for genetic modification which in turn could cause the rise of designer babies. The Chinese scientist themselves recognise the risk they were taking and understand that they had caused a global uproar on the morality of performing the experiments. They expressed their opinion in a rather safe way treating the attention of various ethical perspectives concerning the experiments delicately. “Taken together, our data underscore the need to more comprehensively understand the mechanisms of CRISPR/Cas9-mediated genome editing in human cells, and support the notion that clinical applications of the CRISPR system may be premature at this stage,” the Chinese scientists wrote(Nature News, Nature Publishing Group ) The Chinese scientists approach is rather neutral as they are open to exploring the topic of genetic engineering using CRISPR as long as there is a high demand, and due to various comments lashing out on the experiments underlining its safety concerns, the scientists prefer to stay neutral this way both parties are comfortable with their response. They choose to react with a utilitarianist approach to the situation hoping it will result in maximum happiness.The implications are that both parties are comfortable with the scientist’s response as they assure they will explore with genetically engineering embryos only if it is 100% safe to do so.Personally, my opinion on the morality of the experiment is neutral as I think the pros and cons equal each other out because although the experiments have opened up a plethora of opportunities to discover the world of genetic editing it also involves safety risks. If this were to be put into real practice and were no longer experiments my opinion would differ. I think that it depends on the parents if they are okay with the risk of there being a mishap with the modification, they can choose to do as they please. However, if it has a very low chance of the modification being successful I wouldn’t advise it although it could potentially result in the eradication of a fatal disease. It depends on the severeness of the disease and the perspective of the parent. I believe everything depends on the difference between circumstance, no two cases are alike. I have grown up learning to make decisions depending on situations which is why I don’t have a fixed perspective on a topic because there will always be exceptions and differences in a situation where I cannot form a general opinion. My parents have enforced the fact that decisions can be adapted according to a situation. My perspective is definitely that of a relativist, this has made me wonder how both perspectives on the experiment were formed and I grew curious to see whether my perspective would change. As well as a relativism my opinion differs according to a choice that results in maximum happiness. My relativism and utilitarianism approach goes hand in hand when I make decisions. As I researched I grew more aware of the severeness and risks the Chinese scientist was taking when performing the experiments and it certainly changed my original thoughts. I was for the experimentation on the genome however as I researched further I found out that it involved various risks that would be fatal so my opinion has definitely changed throughout the making of this essay. What are your thoughts?