For quite some time now, people have been looking for new ways to modify and optimize gene transfer in their generations – and some methods really justify themselves with their effectiveness. For example, the CRISPR-Cas9 genetic modification and selection system, which is a fairly effective tool, once again proved that it has the right to be called the most effective in its class – today, evolutionary biologists from the University of San Diego presented their new project, focused around the goal of increasing the chance of transmission specific genes, as was done on the example of experimental rats.
The essence of the experiment was quite simple – scientists sought to increase the chance of transferring certain genes in rats, avoiding the traditional 50/50 distribution, usually occurring in the genetic code of almost any living creature, including humans. To this end, they used a special active DNA marker element called CopyCat and the CRISPR-Cas9 genetic modification system to copy this element from one chromosome to another, passing it from generation to generation.
In order to accurately determine the degree of efficiency and accuracy of transmission of such a genetic factor, they also introduced an active marker into the rat gene responsible for one or another coat color – in this case, white. The number of rats born with white hair will thus be equal to the number of successes in this genetic procedure for moving the desired gene. Based on preliminary results, scientists actually managed to achieve a fairly accurate result, receiving up to 86% of rats with white hair and an active DNA element.
This result clearly demonstrates the fact that the modern complex of genetic technologies and features of the CRISPR-Cas9 system is really highly effective and interesting for carrying out such genetic experiments – and although scientists planned to get all 100% of the result, it is still promising, including with regard to a similar procedure in humans.