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A new survey reveals Britons are keen to understand the possibilities offered by the groundbreaking science but also concerned it is properly regulated
一项新的调查显示,英国人热衷于了解开创性科学所提供的可能性,但也关注它是否得到了适当的监管scientist pipetting DNA samples A scientist prepares DNA samples for testing -- genetic modification is relevant to humans, plants and animals. Photograph: Andrew Brookes/Getty Images/Cultura RF
科学家准备DNA样本进行测试 - 遗传修饰与人类,植物和动物有关。照片:Andrew Brookes / Getty Images / Cultura RF

The Royal Society has recently published the results of an
英国皇家学会最近公布了一项结果extensive survey of the attitudes of the general public to genetic modification. This sent my mind back to 1990, when the human fertilisation and embryology bill was going through parliament.
。这使我的思绪回到1990年,当时人类受精和胚胎学法案正在通过议会。

The emphasis, at least in the House of Lords, where the bill started, very soon switched from remedies for infertility to the new concept of eliminating some heritable diseases. IVF could be used to select embryos in the laboratory that did not carry the disease and implant one or two of those in the mother's uterus. At the time, it was also speculated that one day it might be possible to eliminate a faulty gene from a live embryo after a pregnancy had been established, rather than at the pre-implantation stage.
至少在众议院开始的众议院中,重点很快就从不孕症的补救措施转变为消除一些遗传性疾病的新概念。 IVF可用于在实验室中选择未携带疾病的胚胎,并在母亲的子宫中植入一个或两个胚胎。当时,还有人推测有一天可能有可能在怀孕确定后从活胚胎中消除有缺陷的基因,而不是在植入前阶段。

I remember being astonished by how little this had to do with infertility, which was, after all, in the title of the bill, and what the committee I chaired had been set up to consider.
我记得很惊讶这与不育症有多少关系,毕竟,这是不成比例的,这是该法案的标题,以及我主持的委员会已经考虑的内容。

It came about almost entirely because of the enthusiasm of a then newly appointed crossbencher,
它几乎完全是因为当时新任命的交叉工具的热情,Lord Walton of Detchant, who was a neurologist especially concerned with the condition of Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a heritable disease for which there was no cure. The bill became law as much because of his persuasiveness in the matter of genetic modification as because of the help it would afford to those suffering from infertility.
他是一位神经科医生,特别关注杜兴氏肌营养不良症,这是一种无法治愈的遗传性疾病。该法案成为法律,因为他在基因改造方面具有说服力,因为它可以为那些患有不孕症的人提供帮助。

But the procedures that John Walton foresaw took very much longer to come into practice than he had expected and we are now again considering the issues that arise from genetic modification in humans, though this time not only
但约翰沃尔顿预见的程序花了很长时间才实现,而不是他的预期,我们现在再次考虑人类基因改造引起的问题,尽管这次不仅 embryonic humans.
humans.

The Royal Society survey is an extremely careful investigation of the views of three panels of "ordinary" people, based in London, Norwich and Edinburgh, concerned, respectively, with genetic modification of humans, plants and animals other than human.
英国皇家学会的一项调查是对三个"普通"人群的观点进行的非常仔细的调查,这些人分别位于伦敦,诺威奇和爱丁堡,分别对人类,植物和动物进行遗传修饰。

The survey was carried out over a considerable period and with a great deal of internal communication. It is not surprising, therefore, that people changed their minds, or modified their opinions, during the course of the inquiry. But one thing that emerges most clearly from the report is the common thirst for more knowledge. Again and again, participants complained that they were inhibited from expressing an opinion about new developments in the field by their ignorance of which therapies were currently being used and which were in the pipeline.
该调查在相当长的一段时间内进行,并进行了大量的内部沟通。因此,在调查过程中,人们改变了主意,或改变了他们的意见,这并不奇怪。但是,报告中最明显的一点是对更多知识的共同渴望。参与者一次又一次地抱怨说,由于他们忽略了目前正在使用哪种疗法以及哪些疗法正在筹备中,他们被禁止对该领域的新发展发表意见。

The motivating force behind the survey was the thought that the new possibilities of curing disease by genetic modification could be of benefit to large numbers of people, many of whom suffered from conditions hitherto untreatable. It is therefore essential that these new possibilities should be widely understood and that there should be no room for suspicion that research is being carried out behind closed doors or that there is help available to which no one has access.
调查背后的动力是认为通过基因改造治愈疾病的新可能性可能对大量人群有益,其中许多人患有迄今无法治愈的疾病。因此,必须广泛了解这些新的可能性,并且不应怀疑研究是在闭门进行的,或者是否有人无法获得的帮助。

Among the London group, those concerned with the application of the new techniques to humans, a surprising number held the view that the benefit of the techniques lay in the matter of equality: everyone, whatever their disease or disability, would have a chance to benefit from the new therapies. But this would depend on the
在伦敦小组中,那些关注将新技术应用于人类的人,一个令人惊讶的数字认为,技术的好处在于平等问题:每个人,无论他们的疾病或残疾,都有机会受益来自新的疗法。但这取决于 cost of genetic treatment, which might well be prohibitive for a cash-strapped NHS. Nearly everyone agreed that the new techniques should not be used frivolously, that is, they should be used for the treatment of serious diseases, especially heritable diseases, not for aesthetic reasons, such as the production of "designer babies".
对于现金拮据的NHS来说,遗传治疗可能会让人望而却步。几乎所有人都认为新技术不应轻率使用,也就是说,它们应该用于治疗严重的疾病,特别是遗传性疾病,而不是出于审美原因,例如"设计婴儿"的生产。

This moral imperative immediately introduces the idea that the use of genetic modification requires regulation and this is something that was acknowledged by almost all the participants in the survey, whether they were concerned with crops, animals or humans.
这种道德要求立即引入了这样一种观点,即遗传修饰的使用需要进行调节,这是调查中几乎所有参与者都承认的,无论是与作物,动物还是人类有关。

Many of those surveyed expressed the hope that such regulation should be global; however, that seems to me pure fantasy. Think of the difficulties in establishing global agreement on the management of pollution. In this case, we must simply try to regulate for ourselves and hope that, if we can get it right, others will follow.
许多受访者表示希望这种监管应该是全球性的;然而,这似乎是我纯粹的幻想。想一想在制定全球污染管理协议方面遇到的困难。在这种情况下,我们必须简单地尝试自我调节,并希望,如果我们能够做到正确,其他人将遵循。

There was one concern of the report with which I had little sympathy and that was the matter of consent. A number of people expressed anxiety that, if a child were genetically modified so that that child, and their children, would no longer suffer from an inherited disease, they would have had this done to them, as well as to future generations, without their consent.
报告中有一个问题我很少同情,这是同意问题。许多人表示担心,如果一个孩子经过基因改造,以便该孩子和他们的孩子不再患有遗传性疾病,那么他们就会对他们以及未来的世代做到这一点。同意。

Obviously that is true. And obviously in many cases it is desirable that consent be assured before action is taken that involves someone else. But if you are being rescued from an intolerable situation, surely your consent can be taken for granted. If, in order to prevent my being burned to death in a house fire you fling me over your shoulder and run -- you don't need to stop to ask my consent. So, if you can act so as to spare a child, and future generations of children, the sufferings of disability, surely you do not need their consent to take the necessary actions. Sometimes, I feel that people engaged in these discussions underestimate the awfulness of having a profoundly disabled child.
显然这是事实。显然,在许多情况下,在采取涉及其他人的行动之前,最好确保同意。但是,如果您在无法忍受的情况下获救,您的同意肯定会被视为理所当然。如果,为了防止我在房屋火灾中被烧死,你把我扔在肩膀上奔跑 - 你不需要停下来征求我的同意。所以,如果你能采取行动以免给孩子和后代儿童带来残疾的痛苦,你肯定不需要他们同意采取必要的行动。有时,我觉得参与这些讨论的人低估了患有严重残疾儿童的可怕性。

And this leads to my next point: there were those whose response to the inquiry was to suggest that it was wrong to try to find ways to remove or alleviate the sufferings of those who have genetically determined disabilities. To suggest that one might hope to eliminate disability was the same as to hope to eliminate disabled people. And this was discrimination.
这导致了我的下一点:有些人对调查的回应表明,试图找到消除或减轻那些有遗传决定残疾的人的痛苦是错误的。建议人们希望消除残疾与希望消除残疾人一样。这就是歧视。

But this argument, though I have frequently encountered it, often put forward with passion, seems to me very weak. To say of someone that his life would be better if he were not disabled is not the same as to say that it would be better if he did not exist. But, on the whole, there was little of this in the findings of the survey. It has been a useful and enlightening exercise.
但是这个论点,虽然我经常遇到它,但经常提出激情,在我看来非常微弱。要说一个人,如果他没有残疾,他的生活会好一点,但如果他不存在会更好。但总的来说,调查结果中几乎没有。这是一项有用且富有启发性的练习。

Mary Warnock is a moral philosopher and life peer

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