January 25, 2021

The Niche

Trusted stem cell blog & resources

CRISPR gene drive

2 min read

Here are some articles that look especially interesting on stem cells, cancer, and CRISPR. I was just at the SNO meeting in SFO on childhood brain tumors so those are on my mind more. Childhood cerebellar tumours mirror conserved fetal transcriptional programs (Nature) Childhood brain tumors “think” they are building organds in fetuses. H3.3 K27M depletion increases differentiation and extends latency of diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma growth in vivo. (Acta Neuropathologica) from Suzy Baker-led team. H3K27M induces defective chromatin spread of PRC2-mediated repressive H3K27me2/me3 and …Read More

3 min read

Over the weekends I try to catch up on more diverse reading and sometimes come up with a list of stuff I want to get to during this time, but I also put together weekend reads usually on Fridays as a kind of TGIF on The Niche for the wider audience here. So here’s the weekend reads for this Friday the 13th including some wacky stuff at the end. Anti-Aging efforts got some play in the media including this LA Times piece. Here’s the …Read More

2 min read

What’s more worrisome, potential disease-carrying mosquitoes or releasing self-perpetuating CRISPR gene drive out into the wide world to combat them? We know how the mosquitoes would answer that question, right? And they are fighting back, in a sense, at least in the context of experiments. Mosquitoes were able to develop resistance to gene drive intended to harm their population in intriguing even if disappointing recent studies as reported in an excellent piece by Ewen Callaway over at Nature. This area of study has big health implications. …Read More

1 min read

After the NY Times published an article on June 8th on the exciting, controversial technology called gene drive that can alter the genome of an entire species, strangely the article’s headline changed at least twice. The article was focused on a National Academy panel studying this technology. The headline gradually evolved to become much more positive in tone. You can see this evolution below in chronological order from top to bottom. The first headline sounded like there wasn’t much support, while by the time the third title for …Read More

4 min read

Gene drive is a powerful, emerging genetic technology that can force genetic modification into an entire population. For more background on gene drive you can read my previous post. It’s a very exciting, but potentially dangerous technology with sizable possible risks. Recently I had an intriguing conversation with leading geneticist Harmit Malik on gene drive. What makes nuclease-driven gene drive so exciting for genetics? HM: It is very attractive because of its power, speed, and simplicity for genetic studies. As you know from your mouse …Read More

4 min read

Scientists studying genetics are both excited and worried about a powerful, new technology called “gene drive“. Some have been raising serious concerns about gene drive and in certain cases calling for proactive regulation, which is unusual in science. This method is so powerful because it is designed to induce genetic changes in an entire population in a relatively extremely short period of time compared to natural evolution and is self-propagating. The most talked about form today is a type powered by CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing …Read More