Exploring the new technology CRISPR-Cas9

European Research Institute for the Biology of Ageing (ERIBA)
University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG)
iPSC CRISPR Facility

Supervisors: Daniël Warmerdam, PhD, Stefan Juranek, PhDCRISP 1CRISP 2

CRISPR-Cas9 was discovered as a prokaryotic immune system that confers resistance to foreign genetic elements such as those present within viruses and bacteriophages, providing a form of acquired immunity. Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) are segments of prokaryotic DNA containing short repetitions of base sequences. Each repetition is followed by short segments of “spacer DNA” from previous exposures to foreign DNA. CRISPR-associated (Cas) proteins use the CRISPR spacers to recognise, cut and thereby remove invading (exogenous) genetic elements in a manner similar to RNA interference in eukaryotic organisms.

CRISPR-Cas9 provides biomedical research with a cut-and-paste toolbox for genome editing in human cells. The technology is rapidly shifting biomedical science and is expected to form the basis of biomedicine in the future.

During this workshop you will learn about more CRISPR-Cas9 and how genome editing may help to cure genetic diseases. Students are asked to participate in a discussion about ethical considerations of this.