In news related to last week's discussion about genetic engineering, doctors in Britain have this week received governmental support for cosmetic genetic screens for the first time. A couple with a history of a genetic disorder that causes involuntary squinting requested that the Bridge Center Family Clinic in London screen embryos for the disorder and choose one that does not carry the allele for the disease. This marks the first time that doctors have been allowed to conduct a genetic screen of embryos for a non-life-threatening disorder. While critics argue that this is the beginning of a trend that will lead to the genetic engineering of "perfect babies," supporters contend that even seemingly non-life-threatening disorders can lead to severe distress, financial strain, and even suicide.
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