Return of the woolly mammoth and 3 other ways CRISPR could change the world

| | March 7, 2017
This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

The woolly mammoth has been extinct for more than 4000 years. Now scientists are talking about bringing it back with the help of a powerful gene-editing technique called CRISPR-Cas9.

But CRISPR’s promise extends far beyond the possibility to resurrect extinct animals.

An End to Killer Diseases

One promising CRISPR application is the potential to cure genetic disorders. Just a single errant gene can create a host of problems.

With CRISPR, scientists can find abnormalities in a patient’s CFTR gene, then inject the patient’s lungs with bits of DNA that will replace abnormalities in their genetic material.

Using CRISPR, scientists can identify and then remove genes that make mosquitoes viable disease vectors, and eventually have those traits bred out of all mosquitos.

Fixing the Donor Organ Shortage

By using CRISPR to introduce human DNA into the pig embryo, scientists are engineering animals carrying hybrid pig-human organs. So far, researchers have raised these pigs to live only a few weeks in the lab. In the future, we could see entire farms of pigs whose organs could be harvested for human transplants.

An Alternative to Petroleum

In a recent study, scientists edited genes in Yarrowia lipolytic, a yeast that converts sugars into fats and oils that can be used in the place of petroleum.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: 4 Ways This Revolutionary Gene-Editing Tool Could Change the World

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