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Thread: DNA modification

  1. #1 DNA modification 
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    When I come across articles that examine modifying DNA, I see it addressed at future generations, where the gene therapy would need to be introduced before birth, or introduced into the zygote. When addressing modification in already living organisms, what sort of biological mechanisms are in place, that make it far less difficult to genetically alter a born organism, vs an already born one?


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  3. #2  
    Making antisense Jon Moulton's Avatar
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    The problem is how many cells need the modification. If you modify DNA in a 1-celled zygote, all of the daughter cells carry the modification. You can introduce material into most single-celled zygotes by microinjection. If you attempt to make a DNA-level change systemically in an adult organism, you need to deliver your material, likely very large molecules, to all of the cells in the organism; this is difficult.


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  4. #3  
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    So you'd need deliver it through a full on virus vector.
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  5. #4  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard
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    Quote Originally Posted by Curiosity View Post
    So you'd need deliver it through a full on virus vector.
    Probably something from the Lentivirus family
    Lentivirus - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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  6. #5  
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    Hmmm what if you altered the DNA of iPSC so that all daughter cells carry the modification?
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  7. #6  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope skeptic's Avatar
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    Many gene therapy procedures do not modify too many cells. For example, if you want to cure type I diabetes, you simply need a bunch of stem cells with the gene for manufacturing insulin to be introduced into the pancreas.

    It is also possible, in some procedures, to extract blood cells. Modify a few, Multiply them till there are heaps of modified cells, and introduce them back into the body. This process is being tried as a treatment for some cancers, inwhich the extracted blood cells (including killer T cells) are modified with a new gene to recognise and attack the cancer cells. When enough new killer cells are grown, they are reintroduced into the human body to attack the cancer. This method shows great promise.
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  8. #7  
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    Yeh, definitely sounds promising I guess that's a great quality of blood cells, in that you can multiply them quite easily.
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