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Nature: CRISPR pericolosamente impreciso

Un articolo apparso su Nature documenta il rischio che l’utilizzo del CRISPR-CAS9 per fare editin genetico abbia effetti collaterali distruttivi per il DNA piuttosto imprevedibili (Nature).

Abstract: “CRISPR–Cas9 is poised to become the gene editing tool of choice in clinical contexts. Thus far, exploration of Cas9-induced genetic alterations has been limited to the immediate vicinity of the target site and distal off-target sequences, leading to the conclusion that CRISPR–Cas9 was reasonably specific. Here we report significant on-target mutagenesis, such as large deletions and more complex genomic rearrangements at the targeted sites in mouse embryonic stem cells, mouse hematopoietic progenitors and a human differentiated cell line. Using long-read sequencing and long-range PCR genotyping, we show that DNA breaks introduced by single-guide RNA/Cas9 frequently resolved into deletions extending over many kilobases. Furthermore, lesions distal to the cut site and crossover events were identified. The observed genomic damage in mitotically active cells caused by CRISPR–Cas9 editing may have pathogenic consequences.”

Era prevedibile.

Molti osservatori, interessati a startup del settore, scienziati coinvolti o meno sembrano scettici sull’articolo (GenEng)

Di certo è partita una fase critica per la tecnologia più spettacolare degli ultimi tempi nella genetica.

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