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Genetic Selection Arguments Pro and Con


In preimplantation diagnosis, embryos produced through in vitro fertilization are tested before being implanted in a womb.

Argument for: This procedure allows couples at risk of passing a serious genetic condition to their child to avoid doing so.

Argument against: Preimplantation diagnosis is a form of eugenics. Its use paves the way for more explicit and dangerous forms of eugenics such as inheritable genetic modification.

Comment: The use of preimplantation diagnosis to screen against serious genetic diseases is more defensible than using it for less serious conditions, or for cosmetic or behavioral traits. Countries that decide to permit the former should have strong rules against the latter.

Page last modified March 31, 2002


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