Nobel Prize in Chemistry awarded for CRISPR genome editing to Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer A. Doudna

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry has been awarded to Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer A. Doudna for the development of a method for genome editing.



Jennifer Doudna, Emmanuelle Charpentier posing for the camera: The American biochemist Jennifer A. Doudna (left) and French microbiologist Emmanuelle Charpentier, pictured together in 2016.


© Alexander Heinl/picture alliance/Getty Images
The American biochemist Jennifer A. Doudna (left) and French microbiologist Emmanuelle Charpentier, pictured together in 2016.

They discovered one of gene technology’s sharpest tools: the CRISPR/Cas9 genetic scissors. Using these, researchers can change the DNA of animals, plants and micro-organisms with extremely high precision.

Before announcing the winners on Wednesday, Göran K. Hansson, secretary-general for the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, said that this year’s prize was about “rewriting the code of life.”

The CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing tools have revolutionized the molecular life sciences, brought new opportunities for plant breeding, are contributing to innovative cancer therapies and may make the dream of curing inherited diseases come true, according to a press release from the Nobel committee.



a close up of a book: Doudna and Charpentier are the first two women to jointly win the chemistry prize.


© Niklaus Elmehed/Nobel Prize
Doudna

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