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Claim GDNA - Germ-line DNA altered B4 2020

Category: Science & Technology:Medicine, Biochemistry JUDGED at 100
Judge:97, Loophole
due date:2020/01/01

The Claim

YES coupons will pay IF$1 if there is a documented or otherwise verifiable case of intentional human germ-line genetic manipulation before 1/1/2020. For the purposes of this claim, the manipulation has to be inheritable (germ-line) AND allowed to be inheritable (no neutering or laws outlawing progeny that can actually be enforced on the subject). The manipulation (gene therapy) can be as simple as a correction of a defect, but it must be an inheritable alteration of the DNA. Inheritance does not have to be proven, only possible.

A YES judgment can be pronounced early by showing that the germ-line genetic manipulation occurred and unassisted inheritance is possible (no in-vitro or other aid is required for subsequent generations), as well as being given the freedom to mate (no forced seclusion or sterilization). A NO judgment cannot be pronounced early (except in the case of Armageddon or some other great cataclysm precluding the chance of this claim ever being judged YES).

Recent advances in detection of genetic defects and diseases, combined with the much-awaited human genome mapping allow the future possibility of detecting and correcting (or preventing) genetic defects and diseases before the child is even born or correcting DNA mutations directly in the germ-line to prevent future offspring defects. Some see this as a great milestone in our future, but the ethical issues it brings up could confine the technology to the laboratory for a longer time than is scientifically necessary.

Technical information can be found at the Human Genome Project home page:


and ethical considerations can be found at the Eubios Ethics Institute home:


Other sites can be found through a Yahoo search:


Judge's Statement

I will judge based on the wording of the claim unless it is found to be ambiguous. Such ambiguities will be resolved based on my perception of the author's intent.

Note that the recent artificial human chromosome (see http://www.lucifer.com/~sean/BT/19.html#art_chromo ) does not yet satisfy the claim, because (1) the research did NOT show (as far as I know) *germ-line* genetic manipulation; (2) there is no evidence (or assertion from the researchers) that these human cells are genetically "viable" as human individuals, not to mention fertile; and (3) the cells used by the researchers require "in-vitro aid", which excludes them from satisfying the claim.

I think I must take inheritable to mean among human individuals, not merely among human cells. That is, from a germ-line cell of one individual to the germ-line cell of a progeny. In order to be judged true, a human individual has to exist whose germ-line cells contain a genetic modification, and there has to be some reasonable evidence that the individual can biologically (and legally) have progeny that inherit that modification.

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