CRISPR/Cas9 Case Study

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1. What is CRISPR/Cas9 and why is it so revolutionary? CRISPR/ Cas9 (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats) is a gene editing technique recently discovered through nature. Gene editing is the cutting out/ removing of sections of DNA from the genome and adding in desired gene sequences in its place. CRISPR/Cas9 was originally found in bacteria as five repeating, duplicate sequences next to each other, divided by dissimilar, short sequences of virus DNA. The Cas9 part is a linked nuclease that is aided by a guide RNA, used to cut DNA. The CRISPR/Cas9 system is an immune response in bacteria that works when a virus, releases its genetic code into the bacteria. The virus DNA is stored in the bacteria DNA, so that it can …show more content…
Somatic cells can obtain mutations randomly in life, which can cause such things as cancer or it may just not affect anything. Germline cell mutations are obtained directly from the parent with that mutation, and may cause diseases or may have no affect, like the somatic cells. The main ethical difference between gene editing in these cells are that, gene editing in somatic cells leads to an alteration in genome for the specific person who decides the want it edited. Gene editing in germline cells raises the issue of the future child not being able to choose whether or not they would want their genes edited. In this case, the parent would have the choice and we would not know what affect it would have on the unborn …show more content…
With such a cheap, quick, and simple system at hand, such at CRISPR/Cas9, it is easy to see someone wanting to use it for personal gain. They could make a business of getting people to pay to genetically engineer their future child into the mold that the future parents want. With this technology, it could put power in the hands of someone willing to alter a child’s characteristics for no other purpose than making money. It can also push people to decide that their child must look and can be changed to look a certain way. While it may seem far-fetched, there have been many instances in our history to show that not all humans are good people who are genuinely interesting in bettering our society. In fact, there have been many instances where the color of ones’ skin, hair, or eyes have been used to separate them from the people who were deemed genetically

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