August 19, 2022

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Iran matching advanced states in crispr gene-editing tech

Director General of the National Institute of Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology Javad Mohammadi told IRNA on Friday, noting that the second international symposium would be also the fourth national symposium at the same time.

The National Institute of Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology is active in genetic engineering and biotechnology, he said, adding that the institute is the only national research center, which is covering all fields of biotechnology as well as medical, animal husbandry, agricultural and industrial engineering and microorganisms, and that the institute possesses three research centers.

Scientists used to enter genetic structure by the use of vector or virus, but since the process was not uncontrolled, they did not know virus will place in which part of DNA; so, it might not be as effective as researchers wanted, Mohammadi said.

However, the crispr gene-editing method is like scissors, which enters genome and implements changes on DNA as expected, he noted.

The technology has transformed all aspects of life in the world, he mentioned, adding that this method can be useful for treating diseases such as cancer; so, the gene therapy may be utilized instead of medical treatment in the future.

 When it comes to using the crispr technology in humans, it needs three clinical phases, but when it is finalized, it can be endorsed by the relevant authorities to be used for diseases such as thalassemia and hemophilia, he added.

The National Institute of Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology enjoys the advantage of utilizing crispr technology, he said, noting that given the advantage, the institute holds symposiums at national and international levels from five years ago.

This year’s symposium will address issues related to agriculture, medicine, morals, biosafety, development trends and international markets, the researcher said.

Given the fact that Iran imports 4 to 5 billion dollars of genetically modified products per annum, developing this technology domestically is of great importance, he said, noting that observation of moral and religious protocols in this respect are of great importance.


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