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Designer Genes: What's Next For CRISPR?

Posted by Kin Leung on May 13, 2022 12:00:00 PM

Towards the end of my doctoral research, I first heard the rumblings of an acronym termed “CRISPR” that was starting to gather momentum. By the time I earned my doctorate, the applications that were discussed in both theory and in practice accelerated to the point that, while I didn’t fully understand the mechanism of the factors involved, I was certain that the discovery and re-engineering of this prokaryotic phenomenon would eventually be recognized with a Nobel Prize. Less than a decade after their first publications on the topic, 1, 2 Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer Doudna were awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry “for the development of a method for genome editing,” which sounds a lot less important than it actually is!

 

Epigenetics: Manipulating Gene Expression

Posted by Jiarui Wang on Apr 20, 2021 3:30:00 PM

Foreword

To start, put yourself in a hypothetical situation: you have an identical twin brother who was secretly transferred to another family when you were less than a year old. His new family was poor, and your family was rich and therefore the environment in which you grew up was much better than his. After 50 years, by chance, you both happen to meet and it turns out that you look quite different from one another and are in different states of health; he is short and is suffering from heart disease, while you are tall, healthy, and are training to run a marathon. So, what was it that made you two so different, in light of the fact that your genetic materials are completely identical?