Based on recent reports, scientists have invented machinery for gene editing. The discovery was made through a two-step process; initially, researchers found the mysterious mechanism that prevents DNA sequences from getting tangled and then, using special computer programs, they developed a system to edit human genes.
- The evolution of the experiment
- How the human body prevents DNA tangling
- Consequences of the new discovery
The study was published in the famous journal of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. It has been labeled as a good starting point by researchers all over the world, but investigators have to continue to test their new theory before they can actually label it as valid.
Erez Aiden, the lead author of the current study, began his scientific quest with the intention to discover what keeps DNA genes from getting tangled into one another. Finding the answer to this question is incredibly valid, particularly since the DNA sequence is incredibly long.
Previous studies have revealed that the human DNA can reach to a maximum height of 2 meters, so it is most of the times taller than most human beings. This means, genomes have the ability to fold themselves within the human body and yet, no tangles appear.
After repeated tests, researchers have discovered that the overlaying of human genomes is made with the help of certain codes. These numbers prevent the newly formed genomes from developing abnormal structures and it is them that scientists wanted to imitate to achieve gene editing.
The experiment was later on, recreated by scientists with the help of special computer programs. They have succeeded in creating the exact same loops that keep DNA sequences correctly connected to one another.
Scientists have later on learned to predict the places where new DNA loops would form. Their predictions have been true in most of the cases, so they moved on to the nest step of the process: finding a method to change the location of the newly formed loops.
Using the same computer program, investigators succeeded in modifying the location of the DNA loops. These alterations have been performed through gene editing techniques proving scientists that many more scientific breakthroughs can be achieved.
Scientists think they can use gene editing to prevent abnormal DNA sequences, which are responsible for many diseases, including cancer. Until this happens, however, they have much work left to do.
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