Starting a Revolution Isn’t Enough

The following is an excerpt of The Atlantic opinion editorial by CRISPR co-inventor and Nobel Prize-winner Dr. Jennifer Doudna.

CRISPR is changing the world – but it can do more.

Two years ago, I was working on my laptop in an airport lounge in Newark, New Jersey, when I glanced up and saw a couple walking with their two boys. The younger boy slowly made his way on crutches, displaying the telltale signs of a hereditary disease called muscular dystrophy. Generally manifesting in childhood, the disease steadily robs those who have it of their ability to walk. Eventually, I knew, the crutches would no longer be enough.

My heart skipped a beat. Most types of muscular dystrophy originate with genetic mutations that weaken key muscle proteins, and I had just come from a meeting where a cure appeared possible, using CRISPR technology to rewrite the DNA of kids just like him.

Imagining how the technology I’d helped create could change this boy’s life, I was overwhelmed with emotion. Beyond hope and wonder, I was filled with a sense of fierce urgency to expand CRISPR’s impact to the people around the world who need it most.




Doudna / IGI



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