New CRISPR

November 28, 2019

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Anchor lead: An even more powerful new gene editing tool has arrived, Elizabeth Tracey reports

CRISPR Cas 9, the gene editing tool, has been in the news for some time now as Chinese and Russian scientists announce editing of human embryos. Now an even more powerful version has arrived, and Jeffrey Kahn, director of the Berman Institute of Bioethics at Johns Hopkins, says we must develop guidelines for its use.

Kahn: It’s called Prime CRISPR and it’s more precise, more controllable. It will offer an even better tool. It’s a very promising and exciting time in molecular biology and applications of that. For human health and we can even talk about agriculture and food production, all sorts of things, where CRISPR and genome editing have applications, but when there’s a tool that’s even more precise and more alluring to use we have to talk about how to create appropriate controls.  :28

Kahn notes that international organizations are addressing this issue but participation is voluntary in the world scientific community. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.

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