CRISPR explained with crisps (and assorted snacks)
We are in mixed of the gene editing revolution.
In 2012 a team of international scientist developed a brand new powerful genetic engineering technique [UNKNOWN].
It completely revolutionized gene editing, in fact it's so powerful that in November 2018 a team of Chinese scientist revealed that they had created the world first.
Gene edited human babies.
So CRISPR is a big deal, a huge deal.
It's hard to overstate just how world-changing this technology might be.
It gives us a chance to play God, but does anyone really understand what CRISPR is?
Gene editing, what's that No clue.
Crispeless is that a kind of flower or
No, it's not doing it today.
Do you know what crisper is sir?
Crisper, what's crisper.
Not a clue mate.
How do you spell it?
C-R-I-S-P-A or something.
So CRISPR seems pretty confusing.
But lucky for you, I'm going to explain it the only way I know how, with snacks.
Let's begin at the beginning.
I've grabbed some extra snacks to help us explain.
But let's look at these chip packets.
Let's think of them as human beings.
Now, this is Gregory Chippington.
So Greg here is full of crisps, or as the Americans say, chips, but let's think of them as genes.
Now, I'm gonna lay all of Greg's genes out right in front of you here.
Greg's genes out here.
So yeah, all sorts of different sizes of genes.
This is In his full genome.
So we can lay out of all of Greg's genes here, and we noticed that this one here is actually a nasty gene.
And this is where CRISPR comes in.
Now CRISPR is a super powerful tool that can cut out dodgy genes, and it's made up of two components.
A guide RNA, we're using snakes And the CAS9 enzyme.
We're gonna use Twix.
Now scientists create a guide RNA based on the gene they wanna find.
In this case, we're using a red snake to seek out our [UNKNOWN].
This tells the CAS9 enzyme, our Twix, where it needs to cut the gene.
Once the gene is cut, the body tries to repair the cut, but sometimes that introduces weird errors, and that might mean the gene stops working altogether.
This is the method Chinese scientist He Jiankui used to genetically edit two human babies, which were born in late 2018 And it doesn't stop with simply removing a gene.
Scientists can formulate any guide RNA that they like, cutting Greg's genes as they choose.
With our crisps that might mean they use this snake which directs a cut right here.
When the CRISPR CAS9 complex moves in, it brings with it a new gene.
But in just five short years, CRISPR has gone from a pioneering idea to a scientific reality.
And the field is moving at such a cracking pace, that the future of gene editing tech and crisps is truly bright.
And that is an idea worth snacking on.
[NOISE] I'm Jack [INAUDIBLE] and you're watching me eat crisps.