Just Published: Lau on Comparative Legal Frameworks for Pre-Implantation Genetic Interventions

September 5, 2019

Our recent doctoral graduate in the Comparative Constitutional Law and Human Rights stream, Pin Lean Lau, has published her book, titled Comparative Legal Frameworks for Pre-Implantation Genetic Interventions, with Springer International Publishing.

This work is for anyone interested in the future of humankind in the age of genetic engineering. Traversing the realm of laws, reproduction, gender, health, and innovative biomedical technologies, it is also particularly useful for anyone interested in human rights and comparative law, bioethics and biomedical laws, and science and technology studies.

The book is written at a time when altering the DNA of life at the pre-implantation embryonic level is now a theoretical possibility. The emergence of genome editing tools like CRISPR/Cas9 hold out the promise of eradicating genetic diseases in the near future. But their possible future application to Pre-Implantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) raises a plethora of legal and ethical concerns about "remaking" future human beings. The work aims to address an urgent call, to embed these rising concerns about biomedical advancements into the fundamental tailoring of legal systems. Suitable regulatory approaches, coupled with careful reflection of global biomedical laws and individual constitutional systems must be explored. To this end, the book analyzes the impact of reproductive biomedical technologies on the legal and ethical dimensions of regulatory frameworks in selected constitutional systems; including the discourse on some under-represented constitutional systems in the Australasian/Southeast Asian context.

Employing a comparative law methodology, the work reveals a dynamic intersection between legal cultures, socio-philosophical reasoning and the development of a human rights-based framework in bio-political studies. Navigating towards a truly internationalized biomedical approach to emerging technologies, the work presents an understanding of why the renegotiation and reinvigoration of a contemporary and "new" universal shared values system in the human rights discourse is now necessary.