Hong Kong, November 28: The Chinese scientist who claims to have created the world's first genetically-edited babies said Wednesday the trial had been paused, following an international outcry over the highly controversial procedure. He Jiankui told a packed Hong Kong medical conference that he had successfully altered the DNA of twin girls born to an HIV-positive father.

A total of eight volunteer couples-- HIV-positive fathers and HIV-negative mothers -- had signed up to the trial, with one dropping out before it was halted. Gene-Edited Babies Controversy Condemned By The Scientific Community, Chinese Government Orders Probe.

"I must apologise this result was leaked unexpectedly," said He. "The clinical trial was paused due to the current situation," he added.