According to a recent study by scientists, CRISPR technology can be also used to detect harmful viruses like HPV in just an hour.
Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR) technology is a gene-editing technology which is used to modify DNA sequences and gene functions, as well. The technology was first invented in 2012 and always been a matter of concern and praises, as well. In 2015, the technology was stuck in a controversy when few Chinese researchers edited human embryo genes in the lab with the help of the technology. The experiment led to a strong protests and pleadings from the scientists worldwide. This incident made scientist realize that, though the technology may be helpful in dealing with incurable diseases such as AIDS or cancer, it can also be used to cross the ethics by illegal creation of designer babies.
According to the lab tests carried out by scientists from Cleveland, Ohio, the tiniest molecule was experimented with the help of the technology. The CRISPR molecule was trained by the researchers in such a manner than it would cut DNA strands only when it will detect the virus upon reacting with infected genes.
The researchers stated that the tests can eliminate the virus quickly as compared to the current treatments.
The tests concluded that the technology was able to detect can also be useful in detecting human papillomavirus (HPV). This virus is cause of various forms of cancer. According to the scientists, the tests can also detect parvovirus which is the main cause of stillbirths, miscarriages and even, anemia.
As per the notations made by Yifan Dai —lead author of the study—if the molecule had not spotted the virus, no cuttings were possible. The tests are simple to perform as they can signal the presence of virus with simple DNA strands cuttings.
The researchers published the study paper in Angewandte Chemie.
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