A team of researchers from the University of California harnessed the latest improvements available for the CRISPR gene-editing tool to target one of the most powerful threats against the health of humanity.
The new system is based on a CRISP-R gene-drive system and increases the efficiency of not triggering the antibiotic-resistant genes that can be wound within bacteria. It works by employing a solution that takes into account the genetic heritage of select traits that are classified under the name of active genetics. Known as the Pro-AG, short for the pro-active genetic system, the new tool appears to be quite promising.
The development of resistance to antibiotics in the case of bacteria and other harmful organisms took place at an accelerated pace in recent years. Two of the primary factors that contributed to the phenomenon are the generous prescription of antibiotics and the presence of the drugs the food of farm animals.
New CRISPR Usage Method Targets Genes That Are Resistant To Antibiotics
Previous studies have observed an increase in the antimicrobial resistance in select environments. It is thought that these sources can be transferred to humans, exacerbating the increasing numbers of microbes that can withstand powerful drugs.
The essential trait of the Pro-AG method involves the use of a modified version of the CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing tool. By using this method on Escherichia coli bacteria, the team hampered the functionality of a gene that could provide antibiotic resistance.
Pro-AG can target plasmids, circular DNA structures that can replicate without the help of the bacterial genome. Copies of a ‘’powered’’ genome, which is more resilient than its peers, can propagate a drug-resistance gene within a cell while also possessing the ability to transfer this resistance to other bacteria. When this phenomenon takes place, the bacteria or organism became hardened, and it is more difficult to kill it. The potential of the new method is quite promising, and it could be used to treat human patients in the future. A study was published in a scientific journal.