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The first proposed test of CRISPR gene-editing technology in human beings is being funded by Internet billionaire Sean Parker, a 36-year-old whose net worth is estimated at $2.4 billion. Penn confirmed Parker’s charitable foundation would be funding the trial.
Parker’s backing highlights how wealthy Internet entrepreneurs think they can speed up cancer research. Parker, a one-time hacker whose resume includes a run-in with the FBI, has said he thinks of T cells as being “like little computers” that can be reprogrammed.
In addition, Parker’s foundation is unusual because it says it will control patents on research it funds and even bring treatments to market. Parker compared the tactic to convincing record labels to license their music to Spotify, the popular legal music-sharing service he also is an investor in.
“What if we had a system where all the [intellectual property] could be shared among the scientists?” he told Dateline NBC in a program that aired in May.
Read full, original post: Money Behind First CRISPR Test? It’s from Internet Billionaire Sean Parker