What is Genetics? : Frequent Questions & Answers

Is it true that the goal of genetic research is to allow parents to create “designer babies”?

“Designer babies” is a term used to describe the idea of creating babies through genetic technology to look a certain way or have certain abilities. For example, a couple may desire to have a child who has green eyes and has amazing running abilities. Even though the technology to create designer babies may one day be available, making designer babies a reality is not the goal of scientific research! Most researchers feel that creating “designer babies” is not an appropriate use of genetic technology and resources. It is thought that since this type of technology ultimately will not benefit human health and well being, scientific efforts should not be focused in this area.

As you can learn in our What is Genetic Research page, the goal of genetics research is to find the genetic causes of disease so that disease can be prevented and healthcare services are improved.