CRISPR Technology and its Applications for HIV

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CRISPR Technology and its Applications for HIV
CRISPR stands for Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic
Repeats; this mechanism is the most significant warrior in a bacteria’s defense
system. In short terms, this is used by merely acting like a “surgeon” and
removing the mutated DNA strands. Although many may focus on the flaws of
CRISPR, the real beauty of CRISPR is how this technology can utilize for good
rather than harm.
After extensive research, we finally arrive at the CRISPR-Cas9
mechanism that we know today. This project brought scientist together from all
parts of the world. Of course just because it is “completed” does not mean there
could be flaws. All new technology has defects that can only be gotten after
extensive use of the “product.”
Many genetic diseases are associated with a simple mutation. A mutation
can be viewed as a change in the DNA that generally would not happen. Thinking
as a parent, giving birth to a child that has a DNA mutation can be troublesome
and often tiring. Many parents do not have the financial resources for the specific
upbringing the child requires. But if there were something that would find and
remove that mutation, despite the money, all parents would try their hardest get
this procedure done. This procedure would only affect the somatic (body) cells of
the child. The problem becomes when one changes the DNA to an egg or sperm
thus allowing the change to be passed on.
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As with any new technology, there are flaws, but do the errors outweigh
the benefits, most probably not. This technology gives the possibility of removing
Huntington’s or Tay-Sachs disease for our genome. Some could even go as far as
to say that it would be ethical for someone who is a carrier for such disease must
do this procedure. If they are not willing to and still are going to raise that child
with the possibility of developing these disease are unethical and can be
considered cruel. Who would ever raise a child with the option of a terrible life
full of pain and hospitalization? No one would ever put his or her child through
HIV is believed to have emanated from a Chimpanzee in America in olden years.
It was transferred to humans through blood contact between people and the
infected chimpanzee when hunting for meat. In 2014, 44,073 people got
diagnosed with HIV in the United States. According to the world health
organization, 36.9 million people got infected. Standard precaution when having
HIV is hand washing, wearing gloves, masks and not sharing personal items with
the person infected. HIV is a treatable condition; they use antiretroviral and
adhere to your medication. This infection attacks the bodys immune system
especially the T cells. T cells are the cells that help fight the disease.
Cells harbor coordinated duplicates of a single round HIV-1PNL4-3
whose genome needs arrangements encoding most of the Gag-Pol polyprotein,
however, envelops the full-length 5 and 3 LTR, and incorporates a quality
encoding the marker protein green fluorescent protein (GFP) supplanting Nef
protein in the inert state. HIV-1 articulation disposed of from the cells
communicating both Cas9 and gRNA articulation plasmids, appeared by stream
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cytometry recognition of GFP generation by haphazardly chose Cas9-positive
clonal cells with or without gRNA articulation. Likewise, I found that GFP
generation obstructed in numerous clones that communicated just a single gRNA,
to levels like those inspired by co-articulation of recommending that outflow of
either gRNA in single setup can start cleavage at both LTRs to accomplish the
destruction of proviral DNA.
Notwithstanding its amazing restorative achievement and viability, ART
treatment can't kill HIV-1 from contaminated patients who should accordingly
experience long-lasting treatment. Another helpful technique is therefore required
keeping in mind the end goal to accomplish perpetual abatement enabling patients
to stop ART and lessen it's chaperon expenses and potential long-haul symptoms.
Our discoveries deliver vital boundaries to this objective, as we created
CRISPR/Cas9 systems that destroyed coordinated duplicates of HIV-1 from
human CD4+ T-cells, hindered HIV-1 disease in essential refined human CD4+
T-cells, and stifled viral replication ex vivo in fringe blood mononuclear cells
(PBMCs) and CD4+ T-cells of HIV-1+ patients.
The rapid developments in longevity extending technologies in recent
times have created new ethical concerns about the human population and its many
societies. Medical research into human longevity promises to significantly
improve human life by increasing not only its quantity but also its quality to a
degree it ordinarily would not be able to sustain. This increased longevity will
likely be accompanied by unexpected, possibly severe consequences which would
almost certainly affect our societies in unpredictable ways. Several authors have
written recently about new research and technological developments that could
significantly improve human lifespans which has numerous moral and ethical
implications for individuals and their societies.
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In her article, “Herzfeld, Noreen Healing and Enhancing 2009) new
biomedical research called CRISPR has developed into a crucial tool for use in
genetic manipulation. CRISPR/ Cas9 has immense potential for application in
furthering research into ways of advancing human health. Some potential
applications for CRISPR are in cancer and HIV/AIDS research. The benefits of
CRISPR/Cas9 come with additional risks and issues given that it is relatively new
technology. The foremost ethical concerns in this field of research are dictated by
the requirement for the benefits to be greater than the risks. Human genome
editing raises the question of justice and equality in line with concerns about who
will have access to such technologies. CRISPR/Cas9 technology poses the risk of
producing unintended, off-target mutations which may create unforeseen
complications to human beings. Disregarding such risks and proceeding with such
new research is tantamount to undermining the significance of human life in its
natural state. Noreen Herzfeld poses a question regarding the pluripotency of
human cells and asks whether all cells, therefore, have the potential to become a
human individual. She explains that “Each cell in our body contains the genetic
potential to become a human person, yet we instinctively know that a cell from
our blood, our skin, a particular organ is not in itself a person” (Herzfeld, p.33).
Another issue related to this is the ability of humans to create new life
utilizing the technology of genetic engineering. Religion and philosophy have
often discussed humanity’s power to create vs. god’s power. The debate has
become political, but advances are still being made. Ever since the discovery of
DNA by Watson and Crick, the process has been used to help alter the genes of
existing humans to create a better and healthier outcome of humans that may be
superior to humans already in existence. Some of this is already taking place with
Gene editing. It has been tested and used during in-vitro fertilization so that life
can be created for couples that can’t have children. The ethics behind this practice
come into play when gene editing is done to create the perfect human. This
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creation of the ideal human has ethical consequences because it makes humans
able to recreate something that before only God could do. It has presented moral
and political controversy and is still being discussed to decide where to draw the
line on creating artificial human life (Powers of Perfection: Genetic Engineering).
These technologies are leading the way to make life everlasting life. If we
have the power to control genes and there effects then eventually with enough
research, we may be able to stop the aging process altogether. It would lead to a
state of humans living far past their current life expectancies and possibly of
immortality for humankind. The importance of this concept being examined using
some animals that seem to have capabilities that humans don’t and seeing if they
can transfer these qualities over to human life forms. One example of this is the
TED Talk by Michael Archer that discusses bringing back species from
extinction. He outlines how bringing back certain types of animals that humans
killed off would be a first step in reintegrating the earth with animals that we
drove to extinction. One of the animals that he mentioned is a frog that incubates
her babies in her stomach and then throws them up when they are ready to hatch.
It is an important discovery because it means that the frog can change a part of its
body into an organ with a function that it was not initially intended. It could be
essential for humans who have diseases that debilitate parts of their bodies. It
may be a good reason to look into reanimation, but it does cross a fine ethical line.
If we were to bring back species that went extinct then what would the laws be
about reanimating humans using similar technology? It is an essential ethical
concept that the scientific community should consider carefully before moving
forward with bringing extinct animals back to life.
The rapid developments in artificial intelligence and cybernetics in recent
times have created new ethical concerns about the existence of machines with
higher intellectual capabilities than human beings. Such super intelligence
resources would significantly improve human life by hastening technological and
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scientific research to paces that humans would not ordinarily be able to sustain.
The central question that has always been attached to the topic of superhuman
artificial intelligence is how to ensure such a system remains a concern for human
welfare as its key priority. Without human-friendly motivations, superhuman
artificial intelligence could potentially undermine humanity by focusing on other
agendas that it could not be stopped from pursuing. Robert Geraci alludes to the
promise that technology holds for a more exciting future. He explains that “the
general disregard for humanoid bodies has not stopped comparison between
human beings and machines, particularly the vast intelligence to be made possible
by advances in AI” (Geraci, p.232).
Even though software development has always been a hindrance to the
creation of exceedingly capable artificial intelligence systems, technological
advances are increasingly making superhuman AI systems a much prospect for
the near future. Regarding the concerns about superhuman intelligence acting
against humanity, in the form of what he refers to as Apocalyptic AI, Geraci
explains that such an occurrence would be highly unlikely because it would
require such systems to take the kind of actual human beings (p.233). However,
with the ability to create bodies that are superior to those of human beings,
Apocalyptic AI would undoubtedly pose a threat to the human societal
establishment if it does not act in a human-friendly manner. A viable prospect for
avoiding such uncertainty would be to use artificial intelligence systems and non-
human forms to house human minds immortally, a practice which may guarantee
a place for human beings in the future regardless of what form it takes.
The twenty-first century has brought renewed excitement about prospects
for future space exploration, travel, and colonization. Many countries and
independent organizations are conducting expensive space expeditions to probe
the viability of human life beyond Earth, the one home that humanity has known
for all time. From a theological standpoint, various religions do not explicitly
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endorse or forbid space exploration. In fact, human beings perceived space
exploration as the ultimate transcendental achievement because it brought people
closer to “the heavens” which were deemed the realm of spiritual beings.
However, as people acquired more knowledge of space and appreciated its
endless expanse, it became apparent that area holds a much more significant
promise for the future of humanity, provided human beings can successfully
colonize extraterrestrial territories.
David Noble explains that human beings have always looked to space as
the next frontier of exploration. Quoting Rod Hyde, he tells that people have
always feared that staying on earth would leave humanity susceptible to
catastrophic calamities that may wipe out the entire species in a heartbeat (Noble,
p.118). Most religions do not explicitly endorse or rebuke space exploration.
However, religions such as Christianity promise an afterlife of immortality
without encouraging biological efforts aimed at lengthening human life. However,
the religious opposition to biological research that is intended towards
immortality stems from the interpretation of religious texts by individuals and not
from the explicit denunciation of such procedures in religious texts.
Saving a life can be viewed as being the same as delaying the end of life.
With this logic, it is reasonable for scientists to do all they can to extend human
life. However, some ethical challenges arise from this kind of thought. The
question of who will have access to the science required to make a person
immortal is a significant concern. The high costs associated with developing such
procedures might make them exclusively available to wealthy people who can
afford to pay for them. Another question is how a society that features
immortality will create room for future generations. Current organizations are
based on a delicate balance between people who are born and those who die.
Upsetting such a balance poses the risk of destabilizing human society as it exists
today. Another issue that is less debated but equally important is whether opinions
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on suicide and euthanasia will change if immortality becomes a possibility. With
people being able to live for as long as they want, will it be ethical to end the life
of an individual, and under what circumstances might such a decision become
viable? These are some of the ethical questions that arise from the debate on
immortality. (TED Talk, Year)
Personally, CRISPR has the possibility of removing disease from our
genome and make us, as a whole, stronger. Many are afraid that people would use
CRISPR to enhance phenotypes (beauty). Since this mechanism is relatively new
them, there is still room for regulations and guidelines. Why remove all
possibilities of a better life for our children. The research regarding DNA editing
is vital especially its implementation on curing and preventing hereditary
diseases. Therefore, the funding of the study should be via taxpayer monies and
not the private sectors. It is because, the research tackles and solves issues that
directly affect human beings and also nature hence finance from the taxpayers
will be applicable since they also benefit from the study. The research on this
topic is the best since it entails living things with human life inclusive. Think of
the better life they could have. Through CRISPR there would be no chances for
leukemia are other terrible cancers to plague their lives anymore. We must
provide a substantial and quite joyous experience for the next generation.
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Works Cited
"CRISPR TIMELINE." Broad Institute. Broad Institute, n.d. Web. 28 Apr. 2017.
Geraci, Robert M. "Spiritual robots: Religion and Our Scientific View of the
Natural World." Theology and Science 4.3 (2006): 229-246.
Herzfeld, Noreen L. "Healing or Enhancing?" (2009).
Noble, David F. The Religion of Technology: The Divinity of Man and the Spirit
of Invention. Knopf, 2013.
Second Chance for Tasmanian Tigers and Fantastic Frogs: Perf. Michael Archer.
Second Chance for Tasmanian Tigers and Fantastic Frogs: Michael
Archer at TEDxDeExtinction. TEDx Talks, 2 Apr. 2013. Web. 14 Dec.
Wade, Nicholas. "Scientists Seek Ban on Method of Editing the Human
Genome." The New York Times. The New York Times, 19 Mar. 2015.
Web. 28 Apr. 2017.
Institute. Broad Institute, n.d. Web. 28 Apr. 2017.

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