HARVARD JUST GENE-HACKED STEM CELLS INSIDE A LIVING ORGANISM | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

HARVARD JUST GENE-HACKED STEM CELLS INSIDE A LIVING ORGANISM

NO-HASSLE EDITING
For the first time, scientists gene-hacked an animal’s stem cells — without removing them.

Normally, altering a stem cell with CRISPR requires extracting it, keeping it alive in a lab setting, and hoping that the edit takes after re-inserting it into the body. But now Harvard scientists have found a way to skip that process, according to researchpublished in the journal Cell Reports. Their new technique alters the genomes of stem cells in a mouse’s body — and spreads the edits throughout the creature’s body as cells reproduce.

In the long run, the new technique could be used to gene-hack genetic conditions into nonexistence by editing them out of stem cells that then propagate throughout the body, replacing diseased cells as they go — a concrete step toward treating DNA as just one more type of code to hack and rewrite.

HOME-GROWN
The scientists loaded CRISPR proteins into special types of viruses and injected them into mice, where the CRISPR edited stem cells and made them glow red, according to New Atlas.

The gene-hacked DNA take hold in 60 percent of the skeletal muscle stem cells that the scientists had targeted, but also spread to stem cells in the mouse’s skin and bone marrow.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is as exciting, as it is terrifying, when the wrong hands get in charge of technology like this; think of Tolkien's created, horrible orcs, and you've got the idea.

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