VATICAN CITY, Feb 25 (LSN) – Yesterday, Pope John Paul II addressed the Pontifical Academy for Life, who are studying the theme “The Human Genome: Human Personality and the Society of the Future” in their Fourth Plenary Assembly. Speaking about the human genome, the genetic blueprint of individuals, the Pope said, “It is on the basis of this inner truth about the genome, already present at the moment of procreation when the genetic heritage of the father and the mother unite, that the Church has taken on the task of defending the human dignity of all individuals from the moment they come into existence.”  The pontiff noted that the human genome “has its foundation in the spiritual soul which pervades and vivifies it.”“Therefore, it is not licit to carry out any type of intervention on the genome which is not directed toward the good of the person … just as it is not licit to discriminate against human subjects on the basis of eventual genetic defects revealed before or after birth,” he said.  The pope condemned the processes of selective screening and killing of preborn children for health defects, calling it “selective eugenism.”“I feel the duty to express here my concern,” he continued, “about the establishment of a cultural climate that favors …  discrimination against those who turn out not to be healthy in prenatal exams.” He also reinforced that “the Catholic Church insists that recognition of the dignity of a human being as a person from the moment of conception be recognized by law.”  The Pontifical Academy for Life was set up by the Pope in 1994 to study ways to defend and promote the right to life.