On Wednesday, April 28, 2021, the Faith and Life Sciences Reference Group concluded its two-webinar series “CRISPR-Cas9: From Anti-Viral to Going Viral” (English only). Presented by Dr. James Rusthoven, the series brought Christian bioethics to bear on CRISPR-Cas9. This revolutionary technology enables geneticists to alter parts of the genome by removing, adding, or altering sections of the DNA sequence. As helpful as it may be in resolving or healing genetic conditions, the technology raises difficult bioethical concerns in particular because it has the power to introduce heritable changes to the human genome.
The first webinar was held on March 31 and focused on what gene-editing technology means for human flourishing, while April 28’s session introduced some of the ethical issues at stake.
It is our hope to make these webinars available as videos on the Council’s news channel for those who were unable to attend in real time. All who registered for this event will receive email notification when they are available, as well as announcements of future webinars and programming around this topic. We will, of course, also post updates right here on our news page.
Attendees of the webinar were grateful to have had the opportunity to learn more about this unfolding technology. “Fantastic job!” Wrote Candis, who attended this week’s webinar. “I am so happy that you have undertaken this education and that I was privileged to be a part of it. I do not want this to stop here. This is so very important for respecting human dignity!”
The Council wishes to thank to Dr. James Rusthoven, Rev. Dr. Peter Kuhnert, and the entire FLSRG team for helping us understand these complex technologies and the questions they raise for faith communities!