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What's a Gene Drive? And what are the risks and benefits?

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Published on Nov 30, 2015

A quick and easy guide to gene drives and gene editing using CRISPR, that takes a look at the benefits as well as the potential risks, from Risk Bites.

A gene drive is a radical new way of re-engineering the genetic makeup of an entire species - including harmful insects like mosquitoes. But as the technology steams head, fueled by powerful gene editing techniques coming out of synthetic biology like CRISPR Cas9, what are the risks, and how can we ensure that it is used safely and responsibly without causing harm?

For more on the opportunities and challenges of technologies like gene drives, visit the ASU School for the Future of Innovation in Society at http://sfis.asu.edu


ESSENTIAL LINKS

FAQ: Gene Drives. The Weiss Institute (highly recommended): http://wyss.harvard.edu/staticfiles/n...

How gene drive technology works (video) The Wyss Institute: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G1L0G...

Gene Drive. Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gene_drive

Gene drive' mosquitoes engineered to fight malaria. Nature News, November 23 2015. http://www.nature.com/news/gene-drive...

World Economic Forum: How gene editing is changing the world: https://agenda.weforum.org/2015/11/ho...

On the reversibility of gene drives. The Scientist: http://www.the-scientist.com/?article...

Regulating Gene Drives – Science Magazine, 8 August 2014: http://www.sciencemag.org/content/345...

Gene Drive – This could be the next weapon of mass destruction. Quartz (look beyond the hyperbolic headline!): http://qz.com/554337/this-could-be-th...

Breakthrough DNA Editor Borne of Bacteria. Carl Zimmer, Quanta Magazine. Feb 26 2015. https://www.quantamagazine.org/201502...

The CRISPR Revolution – Science Magazime: http://www.sciencemag.org/site/extra/...

CRISPR: The good, the bad, and the unknown. Nature Special: http://www.nature.com/news/crispr-1.1...

The Gene Hackers – The New Yorker: http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/201...

Safety upgrade found for gene-editing technique – Nature News: http://www.nature.com/news/safety-upg...


ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

Many thanks to Todd Kuiken (Synthetic Biology project - http://www.synbioproject.org/), and Emma Frow and Neekta Hamidi at Arizona State University (http://sfis.asu.edu), for feedback on the script for this video.

Backing track: Mandolin Highway by Olive Musique. http://www.premiumbeat.com/royalty_fr...

Risk Bites videos are devised, created and produced by Andrew Maynard, in association with the Arizona State University School for the Future of Innovation in Society (http://sfis.asu.edu). They are produced under a Creative Commons License CC-BY-SA

Risk Bites is your guide to making sense of risk. We cover everything from understanding and balancing the risks and benefits of everyday products, to health science more broadly, to the potential impacts of emerging technologies, to making sense of risk perception. If you enjoy our videos, please subscribe, and spread the word!

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