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$400K NSF Grant to Fund Study of Bioethics in Human Genome Editing

By Maryland Today Staff

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded $400,000 to Kathleen Vogel, an associate professor in the School of Public Policy and senior fellow at the Center for International and Security Studies at Maryland, for the study, “The Social and Ethical Implications of Human Germline Genome Editing.”

The three-year award will focus on the ethical issues posed by the development and use of technology and procedures to create genetically modified humans in China, and its impact on the U.S. and global scientific communities. As part of the grant, Vogel and her colleagues will conduct surveys, interviews and workshops in Beijing and Washington, D.C.

The project will gather important data on how local and national contexts—political, economic, social and cultural—shape the ethical conduct of scientists and how such considerations collide with, correspond to, or evolve with global concerns. Vogel will collaborate with experts at George Mason University and the University of Kent, United Kingdom.

“This work will provide firsthand data on Chinese ethical perspectives on human germline genome editing,” said Vogel. “The project’s recommendations will inform U.S. and international policymaking regarding human germline genome editing research and feed into the deliberative efforts of a broad range of scientific and health organizations.”

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