New Science: A CRISPR glance at the future of gene editing

Targeted genome editing is a laboratory tool used to remove or insert the DNA of a gene of interest to understand its biological function and relevance. Genome editing has direct application in the clinic, as it is the basis for gene therapy. Gene therapy is a type of treatment where DNA is therapeutically delivered to combat genetic diseases such as cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy, sickle-cell anemia, and leukemia. Recently, a huge development has been made in the genome-editing field. This advancement has the potential to treat diseases in a highly efficient and cost effective manner – qualities you do not typically hear when referring to medicine. It has been regarded as “the biggest biotech discovery of this century” and it was discovered in some of the Earth’s tiniest organisms – bacteria. Continue reading