UW-Madison: Human gene editing summit

Contact: Chris Barncard, (608) 890-0465, [email protected]

New techniques have given scientists tools to make faster, easier and more precise changes to animal genes – and fueled debate about the implications of using those tools to alter human genes. World experts on the topic are gathered through Thursday in Washington, D.C., for the International Summit on Human Gene Editing, where they will discuss the scientific, medical, ethical and governance issues associated with advances in human gene editing.

Several University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers are attending the summit and are available to talk about gene editing and the summit.

Alta Charo, professor of law and longtime student of the regulation and ethics of biotechnology, is co-chair of a study committee established in November by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to look into the implications of gene editing. Contact: 608-239-4917 or [email protected]

Pilar Ossorio, professor of law and bioethics, studies governance of large-scale bioscience research, ethical issues in genetics, and regulation of research with human participants. Ossorio is moderating a summit discussion Wednesday of governance at the international and national level. Contact: 608-334-6104 and [email protected]

Krishanu Saha, an assistant professor of biomedical engineering, is an expert in gene-editing human cells for regenerative medicine and other biomedical applications. Contact: [email protected] (email preferred) or 608-316-4313.

Dietram Scheufele, professor of life sciences communication, focuses his research on the public’s attitudes toward emerging technologies. He is a member of the study committee on gene editing led by Charo. Contact: 920-791-9420 and [email protected]