Chinese Scientists To Test Gene Modifying Technique ‘CRISPR’ On Humans For The First Time

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Source: Science World Report

It will be the first attempt ever that a group of Chinese scientists will inject genetically modified cells into human beings next month. The genes have been modified using the CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing technique. The trial will begin from next month at the West China Hospital, Sichuan University.

Lead oncologist Lu You and his team will test gene-edited cells on lung cancer patients on whom treatments including chemotherapy and radiation therapy have already failed. What the team will do is they will extract immune cells known as T cells from the blood of the patients and use CRISPR-Cas9 to modify them. They will try to eliminate a gene from the cells that encodes a protein named PD-1, which normally keeps immune cells in check but is also used by cancer cells as a defensive mechanism.

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