28Oct/16

Appearances Can Be Deceiving – The Problem With Genetic Knockout Mice Studies

Appearances Can Be Deceiving – The Problem With Genetic Knockout Mice Studies When scientists want to study the effect that a gene has on an organism, they perform what is called a “knockout” experiment. The knockout method is an experimental method, usually employed in mice, whereby the expression of a specific gene under study is blocked. The goal of this method is to learn about what effect the absence of the gene has on the animal. Due to the inevitable rise in the importance of genetic targeting in therapeutics, the knockout model has become a very important staple in studying the functions and endogenous expression patterns of single genes in vivo.… Read More...
06Aug/16

The First CRISPR Trial In China

This month Chinese scientists are using the CRISPR method to target metastatic non-small cell lung cancer in patients. The specific technology employed will reprogram T-cells from the patients to remove the PD-1 gene. The PD-1 gene serves as a check on the cell’s ability to generate an immune response and thus prevents healthy cells from being attacked during an immune response. CRISPR is more specific than alternative immunotherapy methods (which are typically antibody based) because you are going into the cell’s genome and editing the genes. This makes CRISPR a potentially more effective method at targeting cancer cells, but it also has larger repercussions if done incorrectly.… Read More...