Chinese scientist He Jiankui made headlines earlier this month when he claimed that he had help create the world’s first gene-edited babies. Despite his lack of any publication related to this alleged research and widespread condemnation from members of the scientific community, He took the opportunity to defend himself at a genome editing summit at the University of Hong Kong.
“For this specific case, I feel proud. I feel proudest, because they had lost hope for life,” He said at the conference, according to IFLScience.com. According to He, the pregnancy that resulted in the birth of these gene edited twins was similar to “regular IVF with one difference”; scientists added a CRISPR protein designed to alter the CCR5 gene to protect the twins from contracting HIV. While many continue to question whether or not He’s claims are true, he claims the research will be peer reviewed in the near future.
Watch He’s remarks at the summit here: https://youtu.be/cH57-YO9Eso