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Southern University of Science and Technology Statement On the Genetic Editing of Human Embryos Conducted by Dr. Jiankui HE

Nov 26, 2018 Latest News

On November 26, 2018, the Southern University of Science and Technology (hereafter SUSTech or the University) was informed through media news reports that Dr. Jiankui HE (who has been on no-paid leave from February 2018 through January 2021) released a public announcement that he has carried out genetic editing on human embryos.

The University was deeply shocked by this event and has taken immediate action to reach Dr. Jiankui HE for clarification. Dr. Jiankui HE’s previous affiliation, the Department of Biology (hereafter the Department) called an emergency meeting of the Department Academic Committee.

Based on the information collected by the time of this release, SUSTech hereby wishes to make the following preliminary statement:

1. The research was conducted outside of the campus and was not reported to the University nor the Department. The University and the Department were unaware of the research project and its nature.
2. The SUSTech Department of Biology Academic Committee believes that Dr. Jiankui HE’s conduct in utilizing CRISPR/Cas9 to edit human embryos has seriously violated academic ethics and codes of conduct.
3. All research conducted at SUSTech is required to abide by laws and regulations, and comply with international academic ethics and codes of conduct.

The University will call for international experts to form an independent committee to investigate this incident, and to release the results to the public.


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