The Era of Genome Editing


Gene or genome editing technologies are the hot trend in scientific community. There are several relative technologies which allow scientists not only to change precisely specific DNA sequences but also to change the regulation of gene expression in a well-defined region of the genome and in a specific way at the same time. This approach has thus far allowed the precise modification of genome sequences but it will probably prove to be a new tool for the discovery of novel functions of the genome.

As it happened before, the arrival and the publications from the genome editing technologies raised the expectations that this is going to be the miracle technology which will solve, if not all maybe most of the problems that humanity faces. Especially in the field of medicine where technologies which will correct mutated genes and thus cure diseases is considered as a “holy grail”. At the same time this applies to the agricultural sector where the application of such technologies might come sooner in the market as new products with desired traits are developing and the regulatory agencies might not be so reluctant as in the case of GMOs. 

Genome editing is comprised by a wide number of tools having in their core either a site-specific nuclease (SSN) or site-specific recombinase (SSR) system, yet in both systems it is of paramount importance the correct and specific recognition of a precise wellknown sequence. The SSN system creates single or double strand DNA breaks which activate the DNA repair pathway that lead in directed changes in the original DNA sequence. 

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Lucy Morgan
Editorial Coordinator
Journal of Next Generation Sequencing & Applications
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