Image of Jennifer Doudna in lab

The woman who unleashed the gene genie

Have you heard the news about sickle cell anaemia and beta thalassemia, the devastating diseases which prevent red blood cells carrying as much oxygen as they should? A new, experimental therapy seems to have reversed the gene errors responsible in two patients.

“Apparently, both patients have been cured,” says Jennifer Doudna. “That’s an extraordinary thing. Here are diseases of the blood that cause terrible distress and for which there’s currently very little that can be done.”

Doudna is not responsible for the new therapy. At least not directly. Rather, she is responsible for something with greater implications still – the gene-editing technique, known as Crispr Cas-9, which permitted the correction in the first place.




UC Berkeley



This is a unique website which will require a more modern browser to work!

Please upgrade today!