Virtual Informal Session of SBSTTA-24 Considers Synthetic Biology and LMO Risk Assessment

The CBD’s Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological advice is currently holding a virtual informal session (17-19 and 24-26 February 2021). Among the agenda items discussed were that of synthetic biology, and risk assessment and risk management of LMOs. The issue of gene drive organisms features prominently in both these agenda items, with civil society calling for a moratorium on environmental releases of such organisms. […]

Crucial Biodiversity Talks Begin for Post-2020 Actions

Amidst recent scientific reports highlighting the biodiversity crisis, new negotiations have begun for crucial implementation of the CBD in the period post-2020. […]

Biodiversity Convention Decides to Address Conflicts of Interest

Parties to the CBD have approved conflicts of interest procedures to limit the influence of private sector industry and other economic and vested interests from unduly influencing decisions taken to protect biological diversity. […]

Rapid Synthetic Biology Developments Necessitate “Horizon Scanning”

Parties to the CBD have concluded that the rapid and fast-paced developments in the field of synthetic biology and their potential adverse effects need to be anticipated, monitored and assessed. […]

No Release of “Gene Drives” Without Precautionary Conditions

Parties to the CBD have laid down strict and precautionary conditions for any introduction of organisms containing engineered gene drives into the environment, including for experimental purposes. […]

News Release: United Nations Hits the Brakes on Gene Drives

Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity have made a significant global decision on how to govern a high-risk, new genetic engineering technology – gene drives. […]

Synthetic Biology, Genome Editing and Gene Drives

Over the past 25 years, the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) has established a system of global oversight for living (a.k.a. genetically) modified organisms (LMOs) based on the principles of precaution, fairness (equitable sharing of benefits) and prior informed consent. COP 14 and COP-MOP 9 will be key to upholding those principles and ensuring they are extended to the governance of next-generation genetic engineering technologies: i.e., synthetic biology, which increasingly encompasses genome editing and gene drive technologies. […]

Discussions on sequence information unravel at Biodiversity meet

Discussions at a subsidiary meeting of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) unravelled spectacularly on the issue of sequence information of genetic resources. […]

Calls for Precaution on “Gene Drives” at Biodiversity Meeting

Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), at a subsidiary meeting, have called for precaution when addressing organisms containing engineered gene drives. […]

Informational Materials on Synthetic Biology and Sequence Information

New informational materials about the important emerging area of synthetic biology and associated topic of digital sequence information on genetic resources are now available at www.synbiogovernance.org […]