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Ep. 27, Page 62
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Comic 2011 - Ep. 27, Page 62

7th Nov 2015, 7:55 AM in Episode 27 :: Save My Place | Load My Place
Average Rating: 5 (2 votes)

Author Notes:

smbhax 7th Nov 2015, 7:55 AM edit delete
smbhax
Layla Richards, a one-year old London girl, is not only the first person to receive genetically edited immune cells, but now the treatment has reversed what had been pronounced to be her incurable and terminal leukemia. Doctors and scientists used specially engineered proteins to edit the DNA of a donor's white blood cells, reprogramming their genetic sequence to resist the cancer-fighting drugs the girl was being given, and "a virus was used to insert a new gene that would make it attack leukaemia cells." The genetically modified white blood cells eliminated all traces of leukemia from the girl's body.

While a similar process was attempted in the 90's, on people with a gene defect that effectively left them without an immune system—"the so-called bubble boy syndrome"—the manipulation of the genetic material was rather unspecific, with the missing gene being placed "almost at random" in subject DNA; the treatment fixed the syndrome in the subjects, restoring immune system function, but ended up *giving* them leukemia.

Since then, new generations of biochemical tools have been developed to editing and splicing of genetic material much more precise; now, engineered protein tool kits with names like CRISPR (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats), TALENs (Transcription Activator-Like Effector Nucleases), and zinc fingers can be configured to rewrite exact gene sequences in specific locations in DNA, and viral agents now available "can place DNA into safer sites in the genome." These genetic engineering techniques are being developed to combat not only cancer, but many inherited diseases as well. While still early, the initial results with Layla Richards are very promising.

Comments:

cattservant 7th Nov 2015, 10:16 AM edit delete reply
cattservant
Drama!
smbhax 9th Nov 2015, 10:52 PM edit delete reply
smbhax
Yay!
moizmad 8th Nov 2015, 12:30 PM edit delete reply
moizmad
That eye, pure evil.
smbhax 9th Nov 2015, 10:52 PM edit delete reply
smbhax
Or he's just got dramatic lighting ^_^