Genome Editing

Gene editing modifies DNA allowing custom DNA to be implanted or taken out. CRISPR-Cas9 is a more advanced method that makes use of a naturally occuring bacteria function to fight viruses by targeting the known DNA and disabling it. Researchers are making use of this process and replicating it through lab usage.

  • Bacteria collect snippits of DNA from invaders to create CRISPR arrays
  • They produce RNA segments from their stored CRISPR array and already know what the invader DNA looks like
  • Bacteria disable a virus at the source of the problem
  • Cas9 enzyme carries out all this work!
  • Researchers are able to recreate this process
  • CRISPR is more efficient and faster than past methods

Somatic cells are being targeted in treatment which does not pass traits of CRISPR editing. Ethics begin to come into play as CRISPR begins to edit germline cells or the embryo.