Scientist who edited babies’ genes says he acted ‘too quickly’

The scientist at the heart of the scandal involving the world’s first gene-edited babies has said he moved “too quickly” by pressing ahead with the procedure.

He Jiankui sent shock waves across the world of science when he announced in 2018 that he had edited the genes of twin girls, Lulu and Nana, before birth. He was subsequently sacked by his university in Shenzhen, received a three-year prison sentence, and was broadly condemned for having gone ahead with the risky, ethically contentious and medically unjustified procedure with inadequate consent from the families involved.

Speaking to the Guardian in one of his first interviews since his public re-emergence last year, He said: “I’ve been thinking about what I’ve done in the past for a long time. To summarise it up in one sentence: I did it too quickly.”

However, he stopped short of expressing regret or apologising, saying “I need more time to think about that” and “that’s a complicated question”.

He declined to elaborate on what he believed ought to have been in place before proceeding with gene editing, but said he would give further details at an invited talk he is scheduled to give at the University of Oxford next month.

He studied physics in China before moving to the US to study for a PhD at Rice University and a post-doctorate in genome sequencing at Stanford University. He returned to China in 2012 to pursue Crispr-Cas9 gene-editing research, launching a variety of biotechnology business ventures.

Gene-edited cells were already beginning to be used in clinical treatments for adults. But genetically modifying embryos was – and is – far more ethically contentious, because changes are made to every cell in the body and are passed down to subsequent generations. Some question whether such a step could ever be medically justified.

Against this backdrop, He dropped the bombshell at an international conference in Hong Kong four years ago that he had modified two embryos before they were placed in their mother’s womb. It later emerged that a third gene-edited baby had been born.

The edit, of a gene called CCR5, targeted a pathway used by the HIV virus to enter cells, and was claimed to give the babies immunity to HIV.

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Flying saucers to mind control: 24 declassified military & CIA secrets

Government and military secrets can range from terrifying to amusing to downright absurd, but most are nothing short of intriguing. From a secret U.S. Air Force project to build a supersonic flying saucer to a now-famous World War II-era research program that produced the first atomic bombs to a plan to train domesticated cats to spy on the Soviet Union, here are 24 declassified military and CIA secrets.

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FDA Will No Longer Require Animal Tests Before Human Trials for All Drugs

Animal testing will no longer be a mandated part of the Food and Drug Administration’s approval process for all new drugs. Since 1938, pharmaceutical makers seeking FDA approval have had to successfully put their medications through multiple animals trials before proceeding to human tests.

Now, though, drug companies will have the option of either animal or non-animal tests—in a shift that animal rights groups and some pharma companies have long advocated for. Meanwhile, researchers’ reactions are mixed: Some say the move is unlikely to trigger immediate change, others are excited by the possibilities, while others still have safety concerns.

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Pfizer has a shockingly long history of engaging in illegal activities and human experimentation

Big Pharma company Pfizer has repeatedly engaged in inhumane and illegal activities in its history, including acts of fraud, corruption and even human experimentation disguised as vaccine trials.

An investigative journalist writing about censored subjects under the pseudonym “Kanekoa the Great” noted on his Substack blog that one of the greatest cultural transformations to occur in the past nearly three years is the complete rehabilitation of the image of Big Pharma companies and their newfound glorification for supposedly being responsible for saving humanity from the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

“An industry plagued by decades of fraud, corruption and criminality managed to quickly rebrand itself as the savior of humanity during the COVID-19 crisis. But nothing inherently changed. Big Pharma still values shareholders’ profits more than people’s lives,” Kanekoa the Great wrote. (Related: Pfizer’s business model is to create the sickness and sell the “cure.”)

For evidence of Pfizer’s history of engaging in illegal activity that leads to the deaths of hundreds, Kanekoa the Great said to look no further than Nigeria.

In the northern Nigerian city of Kano, Pfizer in 1996 administered an experimental drug to 200 children whose parents never knew that their kids were subjected to a clinical trial. Pfizer did not obtain consent or inform any of the children or their parents that they were the subjects of an experiment. The pharma company did not even inform the recipients that the drug has not been approved for wider use.

Eleven of the children died. Dozens more of the children suffered severe adverse effects, including brain damage and organ failure.

As a result of criminal and civil suits, Pfizer agreed to pay $75 million to the families harmed. Now, Kano’s residents are reasonably hesitant of any vaccinations.

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The “Psychonauts” Training to Explore Another Dimension

Kevin Thorbahn found himself in a hotel lobby without quite remembering how he got there. There were flashes of brilliant light, indescribable geometric patterns, and the feeling of being blasted through a gigantic stained glass window. And then he was standing in the lobby, as if checking in for a long-planned vacation. All he knew was that he was enamored with the woman behind the counter. Although “woman” wasn’t quite right—it was more like an outline of energy, a feminine purple hue.

Just as he was getting his bearings, ready to make contact with “her,” he was sucked away, the hotel lobby and entity zooming outward down an infinite hallway, until he was back to reality, staring at his prosaic furniture. N,N-Dimethyltryptamine, the molecule coursing through his body, more popularly known as DMT, was already losing its effect. It had peaked for around six minutes, although his journey felt like hours. The memories of the hotel and the being behind the counter were quickly fading like a dream soon after waking.

Thorbahn wanted more time. He wanted to stay and speak with the purple being and map the hallways of that psychedelic lodge.

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Babies put at risk, even killed, in ‘reputable’ studies over the years

Public health officials and other medical professionals have helped untold millions over the years. But the hard truth is that some have hurt many.

This was a difficult lesson I learned many times when I was assigned to investigate FDA, CDC, NIH and pharmaceutical industry scandals at CBS News.

One of the most heartbreaking early stories I investigated in 2000 was the death of a baby who was given an experimental heartburn drug called Propulsid as part of a study. His death had been ruled a mysterious SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) death.

Little Gage Stevens’ parents didn’t know that the drug he took, Propulsid, had been linked to dozens of deaths, including at least one other baby, before Gage even got his first dose. Shortly after Gage died, Propulsid was pulled from the market — linked to more than 300 deaths.

Read the death certificate on Gage.

My investigation revealed that the study consent form falsely stated Propulsid, made by Johnson and Johnson, was “approved by the FDA” for children. In fact, the Food and Drug Administration had repeatedly rejected it for pediatric use.

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Those involved in Project to Inject World with Experimental Biotechnology are GUILTY of Crimes against Humanity

We now confidently know that Covid-19 and mRNA vaccines both came from the same stable – experimental biotechnology laboratories. As the old saying goes two wrongs do not make a right. In our case, they made a disaster which could and should have been confidently predicted by anyone knowledgeable working in the field.

There is a culprit. There is evidence. They knew what they were doing. They are guilty. They should be stopped.

For the last thirty years, it has been well-known that gene editing causes unintended consequences. Experiments on animals, crops, and now synthetic meats have been throwing up unexpected aberrations. Experiments with gene therapy on humans are dogged by failures. 

Aberrations and failures both actually translate properly into the six-letter word ‘deaths’. The word unexpected is also a misuse of the English language. I should have used ‘inevitable’ because that is fully corroborated by past experience.

Thirteen years ago disastrous genetic experiments on cows were already in full swing here in New Zealand (“NZ”) sponsored by the government. Genetically modified cows were born with ovaries that grew so large they caused ruptures and killed the animals. They were formed when human genetic code injected into a cow cell was added to an egg from a cow’s ovary and put into a cow’s uterus. 

Despite this disaster, under permits subsequently issued by the NZ Environmental Risk Management Authority in 2010, AgResearch was authorised to put human genes into goats, sheep and cows for a period of 20 years to see if the animals can produce human proteins in their milk. AgResearch scientists hoped that inserting parts of the human genetic code would enable ruminants to produce milk containing proteins that could be used in human medical applications.

A Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (“MAF”) investigation found deformities and respiratory problems among animals at the facility – something AgResearch had been open about – saying it was a foreseeable by-product of the project. In other words, they knew in advance it would all go to custard.

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Secret research: Why did the CIA feed children radioactive cereal?

When Fred Boyce and dozens of other boys joined the Science Club at Fernald State School in 1949, it was more about the perks than the science. Club members scored tickets to Boston Red Sox games, trips off the school grounds, gifts like Mickey Mouse watches and lots of free breakfasts. But Fernald wasn’t an ordinary school, and the free breakfasts from the Science Club weren’t your average bowl of cereal: the boys were being fed Quaker oatmeal laced with radioactive tracers.

The Fernald State School, originally called The Massachusetts School for the Feeble-Minded, housed mentally disabled children along with those who had been abandoned by their parents. Conditions at the school were often brutal; staff deprived boys of meals, forced them to do manual labor and abused them. Boyce, who lived there after being abandoned by his family, was eager to join the Science Club. He hoped the scientists, in their positions of authority, might see the mistreatment and put an end to it.

“We didn’t know anything at the time,” Boyce said of the experiments. “We just thought we were special.” Learning the truth about the club felt like a deep betrayal.

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Lab-grown blood given to people in world-first clinical trial

Blood that has been grown in a laboratory has been put into people in a world-first clinical trial, UK researchers say.

Tiny amounts – equivalent to a couple of spoonfuls – are being tested to see how it performs inside the body.

The bulk of blood transfusions will always rely on people regularly rolling up their sleeve to donate.

But the ultimate goal is to manufacture vital, but ultra-rare, blood groups that are hard to get hold of.

These are necessary for people who depend on regular blood transfusions for conditions such as sickle cell anaemia.

If the blood is not a precise match then the body starts to reject it and the treatment fails. This level of tissue-matching goes beyond the well-known A, B, AB and O blood groups.

Prof Ashley Toye, from the University of Bristol, said some groups were “really, really rare” and there “might only be 10 people in the country” able to donate.

At the moment, there are only three units of the “Bombay” blood group – first identified in India – in stock across the whole of the UK.

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Deception, lying, and hiding the truth are nothing new. Whenever there was a struggle for power, influence, money, or dominance, there was a conspiracy… Countless conspiracies turnout out to be true and today we will explore some examples.

As it turns out many of them hail from the United States, the land of “the brave and the free” (just kidding…). So, let’s check out some of the theories peddled across multiple sites over the last couple of decades. 

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