January 16, 2021

The Niche

Trusted stem cell blog & resources

Mitalipov

5 min read

Each year I make a list of stem cell predictions for the following year and I’ll release my predictions for 2019 soon, but first I’m grading how my 20 predictions for 2018 turned out. It seems I did better than usual predicting what would happen this year. I only got a couple partial credit or were hard to grade. The rest were right. Here are my 20 predictions verbatim that I made in late 2017 for what would happen in 2018. 1. Combo cell-gene …Read More

4 min read

Remember that Shoukhrat Mitalipov lab paper on the use of CRISPR in human embryos? It’s back in the news. One of the biggest stories of 2017 centered on a Nature paper (Ma, et al., see my quick, initial review shortly after it was published here) from Mitalipov’s lab claiming both efficient repair of a disease-causing mutation in human embryos via CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing and that the correction happened at the MYBPC3 gene via an unexpected mechanism using the normal maternal chromosome as a template (the …Read More

4 min read

Every year I look into my stem cell crystal ball and make predictions for our field including regenerative medicine. Well, I don’t really look into a crystal ball, but I try to use a combination of what I’m hearing through the grapevine, stuff I’m reading, some info that is not yet in the public domain, and common sense to make predictions. Today’s post has my 20 predictions for next year, 2018. You can see my 2017 predictions and my grading of how I did here. …Read More

5 min read

Scientist make knockout human embryos with CRISPR? Today we see a new Nature paper (Fogarty, et al.) on CRISPR “gene editing” of human embryos, this time from the UK from Kathy Niakan’s group. Niakan got UK permission about 18 months ago to CRISPR healthy human embryos so they’ve been hard at work since. Because Fredrik Lanner of Sweden (see my interview here) also has governmental permission to CRISPR healthy human embryos, I’m guessing we’ll see a paper from his lab soon too. If I …Read More

7 min read

What really happened at the DNA level in the experiments in that high-profile CRISPR of human embryos paper from a team led by Shoukhrat Mitalipov at OHSU? Is the team right that they successfully conducted CRISPR of human embryos to correct a mutant gene, as they reported in their Ma, et al. Nature paper? Or is the Egli, et al. preprint that came out later in response to the Ma paper more likely to be correct in their implied argument that something else very probably happened instead? We …Read More

2 min read

There has been a wave of intense discussions both in the public domain such as on Twitter and behind the scenes over the new Egli, et al. preprint that challenges the main conclusions of the Ma, et al. Nature paper from Shoukhrat Mitalipov’s lab. Ma, et al. reported CRISPR gene editing of human embryos, arguing for a mechanism of HDR-based gene editing relying on interaction of the maternal and paternal genomes in the early embryos. Egli, et al. presented several alternative explanations — mostly involving …Read More

6 min read

Is it possible that CRISPR gene editing actually didn’t happen in many of the human embryos in that big Nature paper that made such news a couple weeks back? Some doubts have emerged that call the main conclusions of the paper into question and argue that more definitive studies are needed to be sure. An international team of top scientists led by first author Dieter Egli has responded via a preprint on Biorxiv to that Mitalipov team high-profile Nature paper on CRISPR gene editing of …Read More

4 min read

In the same way perhaps that some excited relatives or parents-to-be both gush and worry about a baby before it is even born, our field has been transfixed for a week by the Mitalipov paper on CRISPR’ing human embryos even though the paper just now came out. Now that the paper is out, we can take a closer look at this “baby” and for us scientists that involves giving it a critical review. In science, “critical” often means a thorough once over with a …Read More

2 min read

The human embryo CRISPR paper with Shoukhrat Mitalipov as senior author is coming soon. It will reportedly be focused on the use of CRISPR to genetically modify viable human embryos for reversal of a disease-associated mutation. While strangely press already broke early on this paper last week, as much as a week before the paper comes out, and that press suggests very positive data, how clear will that be from the paper itself? Here are some ideas on the big 5 questions (some include …Read More

4 min read

Last week was a big one for the life sciences in that we saw the milestone of the first ever published paper reporting human embryo genetic modification (see here and here). It was one of those situations where we knew it was coming, but it was still a jolt. Not surprisingly this event sparked intense discussion and even some arguments. Below are 4 areas of contention at this moment and some additional thoughts on them. I value diverse views so please weight in with comments. A big deal …Read More