Rewriting the code of life

Entering CRISPR gene-editing technology's second decade

The 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded to two women who pioneered a new genetic technology that has captured the public imagination and revolutionised science. Kevin Davies tells the story of how CRISPR changed the future in less than a decade.

 

When the international phone call came, at precisely 2:53 am Pacific time, the country code showed the UK, not Sweden. Heidi Ledford, a reporter for the journal Nature, had the unexpected honor of informing a groggy Jennifer Doudna that she’d won the 2020 Nobel Prize for Chemistry, sharing it with her former collaborator, French microbiologist Emmanuelle Charpentier.[1] ](Doudna had slept through the official call from Göran Hansson, Secretary General of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences.)

“What

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