Posted by on March 11, 2018 11:38 pm
Categories: Baidu

Source: CRISPR future:gene editing or will 5 aspects of the change the world

In the past few years, the CRISPR continue to occupy the tech news headlines. Experts predict that this gene-editing technologies will change our planet, completely changing every aspect of society, and and with our the coexistence of organisms. Other genetic engineering techniques compared to CRISPR, also known as the CRISPR-cas9 a more accurate, inexpensive, easy to use and very powerful.

Found in 20 century 90 years early, after 7 years for the first time for biochemical experimental studies of the CRISPR technology has quickly become the most respected researchers welcome to the gene editing tool in biology, agricultural science and Microbiology and other fields are widely used.

Scientists are still in use CRISPR to change the world the most early stages. Of course, change the DNA-the life source of capacity also raises many ethical questions. Recently, the technology cutting-edge media the Futurism of the author describes this revolutionary technology is the most exciting use, and may slow or stop the CRISPR technology to give full play to the potential obstacles.

1. To correct disease-causing gene error

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy(HCM is a serious heart disease, about one in every 500 people have 1 people may be sick. The etiology is due to a certain dominant gene mutations lead to cardiac tissue stiffness, which leads to chest pain, weakness, and severe cardiac arrest. Due to recent medical advances, the HCM patient, the average life expectancy has been close to ordinary people. Although the majority of people and not of mortal danger, but it is 30 years old people the occurrence of sudden cardiac death of the main reasons.

But in the future, we may be able to use gene editing to once and for all cure for this disease.

2017 summer, Oregon health and Science University Oregon Health and Science University, scientists have used CRISPR technology to knockout in the fertility of the human embryo in a defective gene. Research results show: in the fertilization 18 hours after the injection of CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing 54 of the embryo, there are 36 embryonic gene does not carry any mutation(in fact would mean not diseased), 13 embryos received only partial repair has a 50% chance that may be genetic HCM in.

In other words, these 13 embryos gene editing produces chimeric(mosaics, only some of the cells of the gene editing is successful, this means that it might still be genetic to pathogenic mutations.

In order to further reduce the gene editing is not completely successful, the researchers conducted another experiment, fertilized directly on the embryo to modify the target gene. They found that last only an embryonic presence of chimeras, this is an exciting result, better than previous similar studies to be much more effective in 2015 in China for a clinical trial, have been reported cannot be avoided the fitting.

▲The study’s lead author, Oregon health and Science University researcher Shoukhrat Mitalipov, Dr. photo source: Oregon health and Science University official website

The study’s lead author, Oregon health and Science University researcher Shoukhrat Mitalipov, Dr. said:“the use of CRISPR technologies, it is possible to reduce this genetic disease on the family and the whole of mankind of the burden of disease.” If in the embryonic development of the initial stage to solve the mutation problem, it is possible that the life of the patient does not need treatment.

Although some stem cell scientists questioned the induced mutations are indeed be repaired, but this study helps scientists better understand the CRISPR capabilities. In addition, the HCM research collaborators one has expressed interested in using the CRISPR technology used in the risk of breast cancer mutations in BRCA1 and BRCA2 in.

However, changing human embryo genetic code may produce unexpected consequences. If the CRISPR editing in the wrong place and accidentally change or knocking in addition to a healthy gene to the patient what will be the impact?

In view of the gene editing safety, the world of human embryonic gene editing test there are ethical and regulatory constraints. Currently, the FDA does not support the financial funds to Finance the change of genetic research-Oregon health and SectionLearn University studies in the embryo not to implant for the purpose, and this study is privately funded. In Canada, the Edit can be inherited to the offspring gene is a criminal offence, the maximum penalty is ten years ‘ imprisonment. At the same time, in the UK, the human fertilization and embryology authority, the Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority in 2016, agreed in London a research team engaged in human embryonic gene editing research. British scientists hope that this will set a precedent, opening the future of gene editing applications in the door.

2. Destroy disease-causing microbes

Although with the many treatment HIV therapy became available, HIV infection has gone from a deadly into a controllable disease, but scientists still have not found the cure. With the advent of the CRISPR Technology Development, this situation may change.

By 2017, Guangzhou Medical University third affiliated hospital fan Yong, a Professor leading the research team completed a study on Human embryonic gene editing research, by copy can effectively prevent the virus from entering the cells of the mutation, successfully enhanced the mice of HIV drug resistance. This induced HIV resistance mutations in a fraction of the physical natural existence. Through the use of CRISPR technology such resistance mutations were introduced into human stem cells, the future is expected to greatly enhance human HIV resistance.

In China, another gene editing test will be in 2018 7 January, the Sun Yat-Sen University subsidiary first hospital, the research team used CRISPR technology to destroy us scans(HPV)gene-a cause of cervical cancer tumor growth virus to prevent cervical cancer.

North Carolina scientists using a slightly different method, the use of CRISPR manufacture phage-a bacterial infection and replication of the virus, used to kill harmful bacteria. Since the 20th century, 20 years since the phage is used in the treatment of bacterial infections of clinical trials research. But because from the nature to obtain the phage is very difficult, plus a lack of scientific understanding makes phage therapy a result it is difficult to predict, as well as the antibiotic market continues to develop, resulting in phage therapy has been not affected by attention.

Even today, some researchers still worry about a large number of phage into the body may provoke an immune response or cause resistance of bacteria to phage to produce resistance, so that the phage can not eliminate the bacteria.

However, although human trials have not yet begun, the researchers are still optimistic that CRISPR technology can be used to develop phage therapy, because they are the treatment of bacterial infections safe and effective method. In fact, in 2017, a test, researchers have used CRISPR to edit the phage successfully treated with antibiotics infections of mice.

3. Resurrection species

2017 2 December, Harvard geneticist George Church, Professor at the annual Scientific American Association for the advancement of American Association for the Advancement of Science annual meeting, published a surprising statement. He said his team will be in 2 years developed a elephant-mammoth hybrid embryos.

Church Professor hope through the resurrection of woolly mammoths to control the global warming trend, he believes the mammoth to help protect the permafrost environment.

Church the Professor and his team hope to use the CRISPR technology from the Asian elephant, an endangered species and the long-haired mammoth of a gene combine. Mammoths have become extinct, and therefore the genetic samples from Siberia found frozen fuzzies recovered and extracted DNA. By the mammoth genome was added to the Asian elephant genome, the resulting organism will have a mammoth of common features, such as long hair, in a cold climate, can play a warm effect. The ultimate goal is to be the hybridization of the embryo implanted in an elephant’s body, so that it is completely developmentally Mature.

Although this study is promising, but many experts believe the Church Professor’s schedule a bit too optimistic. Even if the researchers were able to cultivate a fully functional hybrid embryo, which is implanted in the Church the Professor mentioned the artificial uterus growth will be another need to overcome obstacles. However, the Church Professor��Laboratory has been able to in the artificial womb to nurture the pregnancy period, half of the mice embryos, about and development 10 days. But this does not ensure that we in the next few years will witness a mammoth was born.

4. The creation of new, healthier food

In agricultural research, the CRISPR gene editing application is also a great future. From New York Cold Spring Harbor laboratory Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory scientists are using CRISPR to improve tomato yield. The laboratory developed a method to edit the decision of the tomatoes size, branching, shape of the gene, and ultimately improve the yield.

▲Principal Investigator, Cold Spring Harbor laboratory Zachary Lippman, Professor photo source: Cold Spring Harbor laboratory-official site

“Now, each of the traits can be like control the lamp switch, as adjusted,”lead researcher, Cold Spring Harbor laboratory Zachary Lippman Professor, said:“we can now take advantage of native DNA, to improve the natural ability, we believe this helps to break the yield barriers.”

For world hunger to provide high-yielding crops is a start, scientists hope CRISPR can help get rid of GMO“contamination”. 2016, DuPont pioneer(DuPont Pioneer agricultural technology company developed a CRISPR editing of the maize new varieties, take into account using a gene editing method, technically it is not GMO corn.

Genetically modified organisms and genetically edited crops the difference between a fairly simple. Traditional genetically modified organisms is through the exogenous DNA sequences inserted into the crops genome, the traits or attributes passed on to future organisms. Gene editing than this more precise: it is possible to accurately change the native genome of a specific location of a gene, usually is the destruction of certain genes or change their position, without the need for the introduction of exogenous DNA.

Although genetically modified food among consumers in the controversial, but DuPont pioneer and other companies want to genetically edited food to be popular. The United States appeared on the market of genetically modified organisms has been there for decades, scientists haven’t found any health risk, but even GMO supporters also admit that scientists still can’t clear the long-term risk. The same situation also occurs in the CRISPR editing of the crop. Of course, scientists will continue to test and evaluate these crops to ensure there are no unexpected side effects, but this early work is full of prospects for development. Eventually, the CRISPR editing the crop is likely to sweep the world market.

DuPont pioneer company hopes that by 2020 the“waxy”gene editing of the maize introduced into the American market. There is a gene editing of mushrooms has bypassed the United States Department of Agriculture provisions, because it does not contain from the virus or bacteria the exogenous DNA, this is the first in the United States sales of the CRISPR editing crop. Sweden has also announced that it will be for the CRISPR editing of crops and genetically modified crops take classify and manage, but the European Commission has not indicated a position.

5. The eradication of the planet’s most dangerous pests

As mentioned above, the CRISPR gene editing technology can directly treat the disease, but some researchers think through the Elimination of transmission routes to mitigate infectious disease transmission. University of California, Riverside University of California, Riverside scientists have bred a mosquito, they are particularly susceptible to CRISPR editing effects, which makes the scientists can easily control the mosquitoes to their offspring characteristics. As a result, the researchers by changing the eyes, wings, and cuticle development of the gene to produce yellow, three eye, wingless bladder of the mosquito.

The research team is testing a“gene drive, gene drive”systems, by interfering with the mosquito genome multiple sites on the target gene, so that these inhibitory characteristics are spread. Gene drive is a fundamentally ensure that the feature can be genetic method. By damage to the mosquito’s flight and vision, the team hopes to greatly reduce mosquitoes in the human spread of dangerous infectious diseases capacity, such as dengue fever and yellow fever.

▲Image source: 123RF

Other researchers are hampered by the mosquitoes breed to reduce the mosquito population number. 2016,���Imperial College London, a research group using CRISPR technology, and by the gene-drive system transformation of the female Anopheles Mosquito breeding characteristics, so the sterility like more likely in a population is genetic.

However, the intervention of the mosquito population might cause unintended consequences. The eradication of a species, even one that looks not too much the ecological value of the species, but also will destroy the ecosystem’s delicate balance. This may cause catastrophic consequences, such as damage to the food chain, or the increase in malaria and other diseases are other species spread the risk.


Current scientific results show that CRISPR is not only a versatile technology and is capable of being precise and getting secure to use. But we’ve only just begun to witness the CRISPR-Cas9 such genome editing technology potential.

The future of the world, we may use genetically engineered food to solve the food problem, eliminate genetic diseases, or the resurrection of extinct species. To the future on the road, there are still technical and ethical obstacles. But we’ve been on the road.


[1] The CRISPR Future: Five Ways Gene Editing Will Transform Our World

[2] The Second Chinese team reports gene editing in human embryos

[3] the Boom in human gene editing as 20 CRISPR trials gear up

*statement: this article by the settled Sina pharmaceutical news authored, the views are those of the authors themselves, does not mean Sina pharmaceutical News Stand.

attention【drug mildewechat

Published at Sun, 11 Mar 2018 23:39:34 +0000

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