CRISPR, crispr genome editing system - Part 12

Using CRISPR, biologists find a way to comprehensively identify anti-cancer drug targets

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Cold Spring Harbor, NY – Imagine having a complete catalog of the best drug targets to hit in a particularly deadly form of cancer. Imagine having a master catalog of such targets for all the major cancer types and subtypes. Scientists at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL) today publish in Nature Biotechnology a method of compiling just such a catalog, using the revolutionary gene-editing technology called CRISPR. CRISPR enables biologists to manipulate the genetic material of cells with unprecedented precision and ease – letter by DNA letter. CSHL Assistant Professor Chris Vakoc, M.D., Ph.D., and Junwei Shi, a Ph.D. student investigator in his lab, have figured out how to harness CRISPR’s elegant power to the task that preoccupies their lab...
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A CRISPR Look at Genome Editing

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New Tools Are Driving Science even Further Ahead with the Ability to Interrogate the Function of any DNA Sequence in almost any Animal Model Andrea Toell, Ph.D. Genome editing techniques have taken a giant leap forwards since the development of recombinant DNA technology back in the 1970s. The ability to manipulate DNA revolutionized the field of biology, allowing researchers to study genes in hitherto unknown levels of detail, teasing out a greater functional understanding. More recently, new genome editing tools are driving science even further ahead with the ability to interrogate the function of any DNA sequence in almost any animal model, in situ, i.e., directly within the genome. The ability to examine gene function and organization within their endogenous...
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Could CRISPR be the Magic Bullet?

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You Can Be “On Target” and Still Fail to Win a Prize. MaryAnn Labant. Research scientists and tool suppliers in the life sciences continue to devote resources to CRISPR, which is still a relatively new tool. Much is still unknown, and the community needs a deeper understanding of the technology to better harness CRISPR for discovery and development as well as eventual clinical applications. [Thermo Fisher Scientific] The research community’s rapid acceptance of theCRISPR/Cas technology is propelling a stage of deep investment in technology development. Already, three companies have emerged focusing on CRISPR therapeutic applications: Intellia Therapeutics, Editas Medicine, and CRISPR Therapeutics. To continue to move the technology forward, scientists recently converged at the CRISPR Precision Gene EditingCongress to discuss unmet...
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The patent fight over the next generation genome targeting tool – the CRISPR genes

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The development of efficient and reliable ways to make precise, targeted changes to the genome of living cells is a long-standing goal for biomedical researchers. Recently, a new tool based on a bacterial CRISPR-associated protein-9 nuclease (Cas9) from the bacteria Streptococcus pyogenes has induced considerable excitement both as a research tool and for its possible commercial utilizations. The functions of CRISPR (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats) and CRISPR-associated (Cas) genes are essential in adaptive immunity in select bacteria, enabling the organisms to respond to and eliminate invading genetic material.  Thus, the possibilities for this new tool is enormous as one continue to characterize the tool and develop usages. This new technology/tool is set to become a patent battleground as...
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CRISPR germline editing reverberates through biotech community

The organizers of a recent meeting in Napa, California, to consider the broad societal implications of clustered, regularly interspaced, short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) genome editing have succeeded in their primary goal of stimulating public debate on the ethical issues raised by the technology. Although the event, held on January 24, took place behind closed doors, a subsequent commentary from its leading participants—plus two influential non-attendees, George Church of Harvard Medical School in Boston, and Martin Jinek of the University of Zurich—prompted widespread media coverage (Science 348, 36–38, 2015). The group has called for a broadly based discussion of the potential merits and risks of the technology and a global moratorium on germline applications, until such time, if ever, responsible uses...
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7 Gene Editing Companies Investors Should Watch

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7 Gene Editing Companies Investors Should Watch – Nanalyze A gene editing technology called CRISPR has been called “The Biggest Biotech Discovery of the Century” by the MIT Technology Review and Forbes magazine has said that this technology could change biotech forever. Some surprising news came out of China this week, when it was announced that Chinese scientists had utilized CRISPR to alter the DNA of human embryos. The experiment attempted to modify a gene in human embryos that causes a fatal blood disorder. This change would then go on to alter the DNA of every cell so any changes made could then be passed on from generation to generation. The ethical considerations immediately came front and center with talks of what guidelines...
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HOW WAS IT DONE?

The team tried to tweak the gene responsible for ß-thalassaemia, a potentially deadly blood disorder, using a germ line editing technique known as CRISPR/Cas9. CRISPR technology precisely changes target parts of genetic code. Unlike other gene-silencing tools, the CRISPR system targets the genome’s source material and permanently turns off genes at the DNA level. The DNA cut – known as a double strand break – closely mimics the kinds of mutations that occur naturally, for instance after chronic sun exposure. But unlike UV rays that can result in genetic alterations, the CRISPR system causes a mutation at a precise location in the genome. When cellular machinery repairs the DNA break, it removes a small snip of DNA. In this way,...
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Chinese scientists just admitted to tweaking the genes of human embryos for the first time in history

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A group of Chinese scientists just reported that they modified the genome of human embryos, something that has never been done in the history of the world, according to a report in Nature News. A recent biotech discovery — one that has been called the biggest biotech discovery of the century — showed how scientists might be able to modify a human genome when that genome was still just in an embryo. This could change not only the genetic material of a person, but could also change the DNA they pass on, removing “bad” genetic codes (and potentially adding “good” ones) and taking an active hand in evolution. Concerned scientists published an argument that no one should edit the human...
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CRISPR Digest #5

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Since the last CRISPR update there have been some developments regarding this new genome-editing technique. Leading scientists in the field (Baltimore et al (2015)) met in Napa, California at a bioethics conference organised by the Innovative Genomics Initiative (IGI) to discuss CRISPR policy and make discussion of this topic more visible to and inclusive of doctors, social scientists and the public. They pinpoint four recommendations to be put into immediate action: Strong discouragement of “any attempts at germline genome modification for clinical application in humans, while societal, environmental, and ethical implications of such activity are discussed among scientific and governmental organizations”. Creation of forums of experts in science and ethics to discuss the potentials and risks of this technology. Transparent research to gain...
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Cellectis signed CRISPR/Cas9 licensing deal with University of Minnesota

Cellectis Plant Sciences recently announced it has signed an exclusive licensing agreement with the University of Minnesota, granting the firm worldwide rights to patents covering the use of CRISPR/Cas9 technology in plants. The technology, developed for genome engineering in plants by University of Minnesota Professor Dan Voytas, strengthens Cellectis’ gene editing property rights, the firm said in a statement. Cellectis also has rights to use meganuclease and transcription activator-like effector nuclease-based gene editing technologies. Applying CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing in plants could help scientists develop valuable crops, the firm said in a statement. Financial and other details of the agreement were not disclosed.
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