Mazhar Adli, of the University of Virginia School of Medicine’s Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics, has developed a way to track genes inside living cells. He can set them aglow and watch them move in three dimensions, allowing him to map their positions, much like star charts record the shifting heavens above. And just as the moon influences the tides, the position of genes influences the effects they have; thus, 3-D maps of gene locations could lead scientists to a vastly more sophisticated appreciation of how our genes work and interact – and how they affect our health.
Adli’s new approach…uses the CRISPR gene editing system that has proved a sensation in the science world.
The new method overcomes longstanding limitations of gene imaging. “We were told we would never be able to do this,” Adli said. “[But with this technique], we can look at the single-cell level, and the cell is still alive, and we can take movies of what’s happening inside.”
[Read the full study here]
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