Jan 21, 2019

China takes action against scientist behind gene-edited babies

Biological researcher He Jiankui speaking at the Second International Summit on Human Genome Editing at the University of Hong Kong in November. Photo: VCG/VCG via Getty Images

Chinese investigators accused scientist He Jiankui, who claimed to have created the world’s first gene-edited babies, of violating national laws and falsifying documents to carry out the procedure, reports the WSJ.

The details: It's the first time China has confirmed the controversial births and the first indication that it will punish He for the experiment. State media Xinhua News Agency reports that He "will be transferred to public security authorities" and the individuals involved in the experiment will be "severely dealt with according to the law," per the WSJ.

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Scoop: Census Bureau is paying Chinese state media to reach Americans

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The 2020 Census Paid Media Campaign, which sends U.S. taxpayer dollars to community media outlets to run ads about the upcoming census, is including a Chinese state-run broadcaster as one of its media vendors.

Why it matters: After China's yearslong campaign to co-opt independent Chinese-language media in the U.S., Washington is now paying Beijing-linked media outlets in order to reach Chinese Americans.

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Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

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