Jennifer Doudna was staring at a computer screen filled with a string of As, Cs, Ts, and Gs—the letters that make up human DNA—and witnessing a debilitating genetic disease being cured right before her eyes.
During their "Nobel to Nobel" chat at the Spark 2021 conference, Jennifer Doudna, PhD, and Frances Arnold, PhD, touched on topics such as CRISPR, the ethics of genome editing, working on COVID-19, and winning the Nobel Prize. The two scientists also shared inspiring stories of being women in science clearing hurdles to achieve extreme success.
CRISPR has transformed the possibilities for curing diseases caused by one or several genetic mutations. Clinical trials for therapies that utilize the genome editing technology are already underway for debilitating conditions such as sickle-cell anaemia, delivering treatments in disease areas where none currently exist.
Innovative Genomics Institute founder and University of California, Berkeley, biochemist Jennifer Doudna today won the 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with collaborator Emmanuelle Charpentier for their co-development of CRISPR-Cas9, a genome editing breakthrough that allows scientists to rewrite DNA, the code of life.