Scientists have found a new way to remind humans that technically, we know nothing.
Chinese biologist recently helped same-sex female mice have babies using gene editing and stem cells. However, in a separate litter, the mice babies with two dads died soon after birth. BBC reports:
It was easier with double mums. The researchers took an egg from one mouse and a special type of cell – a haploid embryonic stem cell – from another. Both contained only half the required genetic instructions or DNA, but just bringing them together wasn’t enough. The researchers had to use a technology called gene editing to delete three sets of genetic instructions to make them compatible (more on that later). The double-dad approach was slightly more complicated. It took a sperm, a male haploid embryonic stem cell, an egg that had all of its own genetic information removed and the deletion of seven genes to make it all work.
But will human same-sex couples be able to have healthy children on their own any time soon? Dr Teresa Holm, from the University of Auckland, told BBC:
“[The research] may even lead to the development of ways for same-sex couples to reproduce healthy children of their own. But there’s significant ethical and safety concerns that would need to be overcome”.
At the pace science is going now, same-sex human couples will be able to do the same thing as the mice by the year 2030. We shall see.