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CRISPR has the makings of a disruptive technology which leads to a medical revolution. The ability to genetically modify embryos could allow congenital defects and genetic disorders to be as efficiently eradicated as smallpox. The prevalence of infectious diseases such as malaria can potentially be significantly reduced by inducing widespread genetic changes in carrier species. The field of aging and regenerative medicine will likely be heavily impacted as well, as CRISPR facilitates the design and use of genetically modified large animals, such as pigs, for safely transplantable elements, including recombinant human proteins such as albumin, polyclonal antibodies, and even organs. Beyond the clinic, it is conceivable to envision a time when CRISPR technology is readily commonplace in food production, cosmetic applications, and animal husbandry. For more information visit our expanded section on CRISPR.
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