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CRISPR Reading

In its debut issue, the CRISPR Journal includes research articles exploring the use of gene editing to treat retinitis pigmentosa and Batten disease as well as commentaries on how the tool could be applied to conservation and on the effect of patents on the field.

"This is obviously a very momentous time for the field, and this inaugural issue fittingly captures its breadth and depth," says North Carolina State University's Rodolphe Barrangou, the editor-in-chief of the CRISPR Journal, in a statement.

In its paper, a team led by Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary's Liu Qin reports that it was able to target the mutant version of the gene that causes dominantly inherited retinitis pigmentosa, while a University of Iowa team recounts its work on correcting a deletion within induced pluripotent stem cells derived from patients with Batten disease.

At the same time, researchers from the de-extinction group Revive & Restore argue that CRISPR gene editing could help in efforts to protect endangered species from extinction, and Jacob Sherkow from New York Law School and Columbia University writes that the present patent dispute surrounding CRISPR hasn't hampered its use, though he notes that its broad availability in the future isn't clear.

According to its publisher, Mary Ann Liebert, the bimonthly journal is to focus on the applications and technology of CRISPR.