New era in molecular biology
In humans, each cell normally contains 23 pairs of chromosomes, a total of 46. Twenty-two of these pairs, called autosomes, look the same in both males and females. The 23rd pair, the sex chromosomes, differs between males and females. Chromosomes contain smaller units of genetic material called DNA inside the nucleus that spell out the genetic code. The DNA, a sequence of letters (A, T, C and G), is arranged like words and sentences called genes.
A genetic disorder is a condition that is caused by an abnormality in an individual's DNA. Abnormalities can be as small as a single-base mutation in just one gene, or they can involve the addition or subtraction of entire chromosomes. According to the Genetic Disease Foundation (GDF), there are more than 6,000 human genetic disorders. Most genetic disorders are quite rare and affect one person in every several thousands or millions. In such cases, the defect will only be passed down if it occurs in the germline.
Gene editing, is also known as genome editing, is a type of genetic engineering in which DNA is inserted, deleted, modified or replaced in the genome of a living organism. Gene editing can modify genetic information within an organism's genome to create new characteristics, remove specific regions from genomes, such as those which confer disease susceptibility, add transgenes (genes from other organisms) to specific locations in genomes.
The clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)/Cas9 system, a simple and ef?cient tool for genome editing, has experienced rapid progress in its technology and applicability of gene editing to a greater extent. It has created a miracle in the global healthcare industry. The invention of CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing tools is one of the greatest scientific revolutions of this generation. As a result, this system has the potential to be employed to change each gene from all 23 pairs of human chromosomes without inducing undesired mutations.
CRISPR/Cas9 was discovered in 2012 by University of California molecular biologist Jennifer Anne Doudna and her colleagues. It allows for genetic "editing" by snipping out small bits of defective or harmful DNA and replacing it.
CRISPR/Cas9 as an essential technology with specific features, such as simple manipulation, high efficiency, and wide application; as a result, it has been rapidly and widely applied to diverse facets of molecular biology.
Using the CRISPR technique to remove the HIV genome in every cell is considered one of the potentially promising methods to remove the virus.
Today, the CRISPR system has wide potential for applications in the field of cancer, including epigenetic cancer therapy, turning the genes involved in cancer development on and off, modeling cancer. According to various genetic and epigenetic factors in cancer development, cancer modeling using the CRISPR system is expected to play an important role in the detection and identification of factors involved in cancer.
Outside of healthcare, the technique has impacted FoodTech, ecology, conservation efforts and sustainable energy. In light of the advancements that have already been made, CRISPR's future potential is outstanding.
The rapid progress in developing cas9 into a set of tools for cell and molecular biology research has been remarkable, likely due to the simplicity, high efficiency and versatility of the system. Of the designer nuclease systems currently available for precision genome engineering, the CRISPR/Cas system is by far the most user-friendly.