Professor: Kaitlyn Choi
In November 2018, the announcement of the birth of twin girls stunned the world. It was not their physical appearances that surprised the audience at a science conference, where Dr. He Jiankui broke the news. These twin babies, nicknamed Lulu and Nana, are the first ever gene-edited babies. Dr. He attempted to give Lulu and Nana lifelong immunity to HIV by disabling a gene using CRISPR. Also known as “molecular scissors,” CRISPR is a genome engineering technology that is easier, cheaper, and faster than any gene editing tools previously developed. The goal of this course is to understand the biology behind CRISPR and its social and ethical implications. Students will learn fundamental concepts in genetics and various applications of CRISPR in scientific research. The course also includes hands-on experiments where students will do CRISPR on bacteria in lab. Please note that this course is designed for non-science majors (Science For All course) and also part of the Core Pathway on Humanity and Technology.