In 10 seconds? CRISPR-Cas9 is a powerful gene-editing technology that has massively advanced scientific research since its wide-implementation in laboratories in the 2010s. Now, it’s even used to create cancer treatments as well!

CRISPR rings a bell…but can you remind me how it works? Absolutely! As a reminder, DNA is the genetic material inside all of our cells that serves as an operations manual for our cells. CRISPR-Cas9 (short for Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats) was originally discovered as a bacterial immune response against viral infection (Yes, bacteria can get viral infections too!). Bacteria used the Cas9 protein (essentially a DNA scissors) to kill viruses by cutting up their DNA.

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