I love that I live in a hotbed of technology. Boston’s crammed with hospitals, robotics companies, 3-D printing companies, and a thriving bio-tech industry. I’m frequently inspired by what the science and tech folks around here are up to, and I hope that I glean some of that magic by osmosis. Sometimes, though, I read about a plan or device that gives me pause and makes me think I may not want to be so nearby. Editas Medicine’s recent press release detailing their plans to embark on a new phase of genome-editing treatments is one such announcement.
Editas is a Cambridge-based biotech firm that is attempting to design new genetic treatments for diseases. While that’s a goal I certainly support, my reservations stem from how they intend to do this. Gene therapy has been around for a little while, but Editas wants to revolutionize it — they believe they’ve come up with a new method for editing genomes that involves changing the genome’s DNA sequence. According to Editas, the new genome-editing system will allow them to treat diseases for which we have no current treatments.