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New DNA ‘shredder’ technique goes beyond CRISPR’s scissors

April 20, 2019 dna 0
An international team has unveiled a new CRISPR-based tool that acts more like a shredder than the usual scissor-like action of CRISPR-Cas9. The new approach, based on Type I CRISPR-Cas3, is able to wipe out long stretches of DNA in human cells with programmable targeting, and has been shown to work in human cells for the first time.
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CRISPR-based ‘allelic drive’ allows genetic editing with selective precision and broad implications

April 20, 2019 dna 0
Scientists developed a new version of a gene drive that allows the spread of specific, favorable genetic variants, also known as ‘alleles,’ throughout a population. The new ‘allelic drive’ is equipped with a guide RNA that directs CRISPR to cut undesired variants of a gene and replace it with a preferred version. Using a word processing analogy, CRISPR-based gene drives allow scientists to edit sentences of genetic information, while the new allelic drive offers letter-by-letter editing.
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Genetic code of WWI soldier’s cholera mapped

April 20, 2019 dna 0
The oldest publicly available strain of the cholera-causing bacterial species, Vibrio cholerae, has had its genetic code read for the first time. The bacterium was isolated from a British soldier during World War One (WWI) and stored for over 100 years before being revived and sequenced. The results show that this strain is a unique, non-toxigenic strain of V. cholerae that’s distantly related to the strains of bacteria causing cholera pandemics today and in the past.
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Half-hearted: New insight into why the heart doesn’t develop properly in some children

April 20, 2019 dna 0
Investigators have found evidence that the gene Ccdc117 supports the rapid growth of precursor cells needed for proper development of right-sided heart structures. It does so by promoting transfer of iron-sulfur compounds to enzymes crucial for DNA replication and repair. Silencing Ccdc117 impedes cell growth, which may prevent heart structures from developing properly.