The Alliance for Regenerative Medicine (ARM) has issued the following statement in response to the news that a research team from the Oregon Health and Science University has, for the first time in the United States, utilized gene editing technology to modify human embryos:
ARM continues to monitor the latest developments in gene-editing technologies, given their enormous medical potential. We reiterate our encouragement and support of the use of these technologies in somatic (non-reproductive) human cells to durably treat and potentially cure human diseases. Patients will benefit more immediately from resources being directed towards somatic applications of the technologies at this time, as most genetic diseases manifest in and can be treated in somatic, not germline, cells. In addition, many unresolved safety, ethical and legal issues remain with human germline engineering approaches.
ARM continues to support the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine (NASEM), which noted in its February 2017 report, “heritable germline editing is not ready to be tried in humans.”
About The Alliance for Regenerative Medicine
The Alliance for Regenerative Medicine (ARM) is an international multi-stakeholder advocacy organization that promotes legislative, regulatory and reimbursement initiatives necessary to facilitate access to life-giving advances in regenerative medicine worldwide. ARM also works to increase public understanding of the field and its potential to transform human healthcare, providing business development and investor outreach services to support the growth of its member companies and research organizations. Prior to the formation of ARM, there was no advocacy organization operating in Washington, D.C. to specifically represent the interests of the companies, research institutions, investors and patient groups that comprise the entire regenerative medicine community. Today, ARM has more than 265 members and is the leading global advocacy organization in this field. To learn more about ARM or to become a member, visit http://www.alliancerm.org.