Tag: CRISPR/cas9

License acquired to modify human embryo genes

embryo1

On the 1st of February, scientists at the London-based Francis Crick Institute were given permission by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) to genetically alter human embryos.

Before you draw out the placards… there are regulations. Continue reading “License acquired to modify human embryo genes”

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Could it be the end of malaria?

mosquito-dna

According to WHO, a child dies every minute in Africa due to malaria, that is roughly half a million lives. It is clearly a problem that needs addressing.

Malaria is spread by the Anopheles mosquito when it’s infected by the Plasmodium parasite. Research has shown that disruption of some genes would render the female Anopheles sterile or affect its ability to carry the parasite. But Mendelian laws (remember high school biology Mendel?) restrict the ability of this resistance gene to be inherited to only about half of the mosquito offspring. Gene drive circumvents this and ensures that almost all the offspring and future generations inherit a trait.  This is made possible with the discovery of the century, a technique called CRISPR/ Cas9 that I hope to cover here soon. Continue reading “Could it be the end of malaria?”