CRISPR Can Gentically Modify YOU to be a Giant w/ 5 Boobs!
CRISPR (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats) has made the possibilities of gene editing not only possible, but damn near endless! WHO WANTS TO GROW WINGS AND FLY LIKE THAT BADASS ANGEL X-MEN?
CRISPR was first documented in 1987 by Japanese scientists as 5 identical sequences separated by pockets of other DNA all different from each other. These DNA sequences were first observed in E. Coli. These CRISPRs were different from anything scientists had ever seen before and meant nothing to them at the time, so they documented it and went on with their lives.
Fast forward to 2005 we now have searchable databases. When these sequences were plugged into these newly formed databases, scientists found that they had matches, but not bacterial DNA like the microbes they were found in, but viral DNA. SAY WHAT!?!?!?!
Viruses are the big enemy to bacteria so on first thought your like what the heck? The Viral cells high jack bacterial cells and use them to procreate, most times destroying the bacteria cell in the process.
OK, so I don’t get it?
Turns out thats exactly why. A man named Eugene Cunin figured out that these CRISPRs were actually the bacterias defense system. The CRISPRs acted as a memory in the bacterias DNA. Imagine an epic battle, Bacteria cell vs Viral cells. First, bacteria sends out first responders for a battle to the death. Most time the bacteria loses and thats that, BUT if its victorious against the invader it will send a second response of enzymes that work as a “clean up crew.” This clean up crew will take remaining viral DNA, cut it up and then insert it back into the bacterias own DNA, the repeats previously mentioned. Now it serves as a sort of memory device. The next time that bacterial cell gets invaded it will now make special enzymes armed with those sequences of DNA it previously stored and if the bacteria cells molecular assassins come in contact with this viral DNA it will recognize it, lock onto it, and make precise incisions cutting it out, subsequently destroying the cell.
How do we utilize this to eradicate hemophilia or Huntington's? We turn this bacterias defense into a human gene editing offense. Because it is so precise at recognizing and cutting out undesirable gene sequences we can reprogram these things to recognize and cut out all the bad genes that we know the sequence for.
HOW DO WE GENETICALLY ENGINEER?
OK, but how to we get super plants? You know like the ones that can yield a ton on less nutrients and water? Well we would have to insert a gene or two. HOW? Basically we just get the good gene we want and throw it in the vicinity of where the bad gene was, takeing advantage of a the human cells natural repair enzymes who patrol periodically constantly mending broken DNA. WA LA!
Groovy New Research?
There are labs trying to make CRISPR into an antibiotic substitute, which is thought to put super bugs at bay. YAY! This pill will have the CRISPR machinery in it and will be programmed or pre-armed with the DNA to find and destroy whatever illness you may have.
Some people want to create new species. Simmer down now mad scientist, no Godzilla yet sir.
They Want to Make a Mammophant!
MAMMOPHANT? What the fuck? You heard me, a mammophant!
Scientists are not only thinking of this, but there is a lab already executing this endeavor! They want to bring the Woolly Mammoth back from the dead? Can I get another WTF?
Apparently we can reconstruct a mammoths DNA using computer simulations that reverse engineer the approximate DNA sequence of a mammoth using an incomplete preserved sample of its DNA, and using a distant relative of the mammoth, an Asian Elephant. Once technology does its thing, we can then use CRISPR, the uber precise molecular scissors, to splice the DNA together and get a complete sample to than impregnate an elephant embryo in-vitro. Being of the gigantic size of this beast, they are having to construct an artificial womb for gestation.
You May Be Asking Yourself, BUT WHY??? If you are not asking yourself why, WIERDO!
It is thought because the size, the mammoth will be incredibly efficient at stomping the tundra. This will expose the underlying soil to frigid air protecting it from a thaw that could release massive amounts of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
If we have giant fucking mammoths, what are they going to all eat and is that even sustainable?
WHAT are Some of the Implications:
People may start designing babies at the embryo stage without that future child's' consent and that will be a permanent change for that person and lineage. Once some dude or lady wants the biggest baddest son to play NFL football, dude next door will too, and before we know it were in a crazier fad world than the Kardashians Brazilian butt lift and fat lips. This is creating gene drive, a genetic happening where a particular gene is selected for or biased for. In this case, we would be creating these biases, this gene drive. We have the capability of changing our species evolution and there is no coming back from that. Scientists in China are already experimenting with varying success.
Gene Drive is something that we have not fucked with enough to understand. BE WEARY! BUT EXCITED! At least we may have a standing chance if AI trys to take over :)
MANY MANY MANY more implications and badass stuff happening. Please comment below if you want to add some info, I’d love to read it all! XOXO