Skip to content
About the Royal Society

Second International Summit on Human Genome Editing to be held in Hong Kong

08 May 2018

The Second International Summit on Human Genome Editing will take place 27-29 November in Hong Kong. The three-day summit will be co-hosted by the Academy of Sciences of Hong Kong, the Royal Society of London, the US National Academy of Sciences, and the US National Academy of Medicine. The summit will be held in the Lee Shau Kee Lecture Centre at the University of Hong Kong.

The science of human genome editing has advanced rapidly since the first international summit was held in 2015 in Washington, D.C. An explosion of new research is employing CRISPR/Cas9 and other powerful, precise editing tools, and clinical trials are planned for applications to treat diseases. However, many questions remain unanswered concerning the science, application, ethics, and governance of human genome editing. Of particular concern is the possibility of genome editing that might lead to heritable alterations, and applications for purposes other than to treat diseases or disabilities. 

The Second International Summit on Human Genome Editing will continue to advance the global discussion on these issues by bringing together a broad range of stakeholders – including researchers, ethicists, policy makers, patient groups, and representatives from science and medical academies and organizations worldwide.  Participants will examine issues including:

  • scientific advances that have been made since the 2015 summit;
  • progress in the study of non-heritable genome editing to treat diseases;
  • the state of the science for genome editing in germline cells and the potential for clinical applications;
  • efforts to address technical challenges identified at the 2015 summit; 
  • prospects for developing international regulatory frameworks; 
  • ethical and societal issues surrounding the pursuit of human genome-editing applications; and efforts to engage the public.

The four Academies are appointing an international, multidisciplinary program committee to plan the summit and develop the agenda. Sign up to receive more information and updates on the upcoming summit, including notification when registration opens. Those unable to attend in person will be able to view the summit via live video webcast.    

Follow the conversation on Twitter using #GeneEditSummit.