New genome editing techniques, combined with readily available methods of human in vitro fertilization and embryonic culture, encourage some bold visions of genetic enhancement of our species in the foreseeable future. But can the recent technologies overcome the ethical and biological barriers that doomed the eugenics programs of 20th century to fail? The possibilities opened by new technologies are fascinating, yet fundamental limits determined by the laws of heredity remain in place, and visions of superhuman future remain more fiction than science.
Pawel Golik, Professor of Genetics at the Faculty of Biology, University of Warsaw. Director of the Institute of Genetics and Biotechnology. Previously worked in the Center for Molecular Medicine, Emory University, in Atlanta, GA (USA) and in the Centre de Génétique Moléculaire CNRS in Gif-sur-Yvette (France). Currently works on the RNA processing and stability in mitochondria and the evolution of nucleo-mitochondrial interactions. Engages in popularization of science