A New Biotechnology Revolution: CRISPR Genome Editing
Scientists are claiming that CRISPR genome editing is going to transform biotechnology as we known it and will provide inexpensive cures for a variety of diseases, cheaper ways to produce new crops and livestock, and provide a new way to manage the environmental commons. It could completely change the way we live our lives and eat our food.
But what exactly is CRISPR-Cas9? CRISPR is a genome editing tool. Simply put, this tool allows scientists to edit DNA. These edits can be done to produce a variation on our food, or treat genetic components for cancer patients. While the technology is not yet available to be used on humans, the human trials could be just a few years away.
One of the biggest expectations from CRISPR is the ability to almost entirely eliminate HIV. The experiments are not quite to animal trials, but scientists have high hopes for the results. How would that work? Basically, the researcher will target segments of HIV genes using CRISPR loaded into a viral delivery system that inactivated the HIV genes. Temple University researcher Kamel Khalili said, “Our eventual goal is a clinical trial in human patients.”
While there are controversial concerns about this technology, the use of CRISPR could lead to amazing results – especially in HIV patients.