Euegenics? Maybe Not.
I posted about the science of pre-implantation diagnosis, and my fears that the procedure creates a slippery slope toward eugenics. This interesting bit from Slate shows that in a small minority of instances, that worry is unfounded:
Deformer BabiesFascinating to read about the other side of the designer-baby coin.
The deliberate crippling of children.
Several U.S. fertility clinics admit they've helped couples deliberately select defective embryos. According to a new survey report, "Some prospective parents have sought [preimplantation genetic diagnosis] to select an embryo for the presence of a particular disease or disability, such as deafness, in order that the child would share that characteristic with the parents. Three percent of IVF-PGD clinics report having provided PGD to couples who seek to use PGD in this manner." Since 1) the United States has more than 400 fertility clinics, 2) more than two-thirds that answered the survey offer PGD, and 3) some clinics that have done it may not have admitted it, the best guess is that at least eight U.S. clinics have done it. Old fear: designer babies. New fear: deformer babies. (For Human Nature's take, including more findings from the survey, click here.)