Genome Editing (Crispr)

Let's  talk about Crispr-Cas9

YouTuber Mai Thi Nguyen-Kim talks to Nobel Prize winner in Chemistry Emmanuelle Charpentier about the discovery that revolutionized genetic engineering – the Crispr-Cas9 gene scissors – and the possibilities of genome editing more

Scientific highlights 2020

Many publications by Max Planck scientists in 2020 were of great social relevance or met with a great media response. We have selected 13 articles to present you with an overview of some noteworthy research of the year more

Two Nobel Prize wins

Emmanuelle Charpentier honoured with the 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Reinhard Genzel wins Nobel Prize in Physics more

Emmanuelle Charpentier honoured with the 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry

The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences has awarded this year’s Nobel Prize in Chemistry to Prof. Dr. Emmanuelle Charpentier, Scientific and Managing Director of the newly established Max Planck Unit for the Science of Pathogens in Berlin for her groundbreaking work on the CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing technology. She shares the prize with Jennifer Doudna from the University of California, Berkeley, USA. more

Directed protein evolution with CRISPR-Cas9

New area of application for gene scissors: Optimized proteins for biomedical research more

More precise Cas9 variant

Researchers develop more specific CRISPR-Cas9 gene scissors more

“There is no reason for germline therapy”

Stefan Mundlos, from the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics, explains why there will be no designer babies in the near future more

Max Planck Society publishes discussion paper on genome editing

Max Planck Society rejects interventions in the human germline more

Genome Editing

Gene scissors, molecular scalpel – these descriptive terms are intended to convey what the new method of gene editing with rather unwieldy name of CRISPR/Cas9 can do. As they suggest, the system, which, in its natural form, consists of two RNA molecules and one protein molecule, can cleave the hereditary molecule DNA. Moreover, it can do this with surgical precision at a specific site in the genome. This enables researchers to switch genes off or insert new sequences at the cutting site. As a result, DNA can be modified much faster and more easily than was possible using previous gene-editing methods. Although the system basically sounds simple, various factors must be coordinated with extreme precision for the gene scissors to be able to function with such accuracy. For this reason, even after 30 years of research, the functioning of CRISPR/Cas9 is still not entirely understood. more

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