Bill Gates and Google Ventures have invested in Editas Medicine Inc., a company that uses the Crispr-Cas9 technology to “fix faulty genes that lead to eye disorders.” The company will also work closely “Juno Therapeutics Inc., which engineers immune-system cells to fight cancer.”
Caroline Chen via Bloomberg Business:
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Crispr allows scientists to edit the human genome by precisely cutting out faulty sections of DNA and replacing them with healthy ones. The technology is relatively cheap and easy compared with other genome editing techniques, and has drawn a rush of scientists interested in modifying everything from diseased human cells to insects and plants.
It’s also been controversial, with some researchers calling for a moratorium on its use in human sperm, eggs and embryos, known as the human germline. One fear is that the technology could introduce changes that would affect not only one patient, but future generations as well.