Berkeley Extension and the Innovative
Genomics Institute (IGI) announce the launch of a practical training
on CRISPR and genome editing. CRISPR is infiltrating nearly every
crevice of biology, leading to new discoveries and surprising
applications. The fast pace of this technology captures news headlines
daily, leaving the public to wonder how CRISPR will impact their lives.
Understanding the reality of CRISPR’s impending impact on the real world
requires experienced biologists and other professionals whose business
is deeply rooted in this technology.
This four-part series includes a lecture and lab where professionals are
immersed in learning the latest applications, ethics and policy
considerations surrounding CRISPR biology and the use of CRISPR-Cas9 as
a tool for genome editing.
“Genome editing will increasingly affect our daily lives so it’s crucial
that we bring people into the conversation sooner rather than later,”
says Dr. Jennifer Doudna, Executive Director at IGI. “This course falls
perfectly in line with the IGI’s educational mission to empower diverse
audiences with reliable resources. I’m excited that we’ll be able to
offer this learning opportunity to the local community. What better
place to learn about CRISPR than at UC Berkeley?”
Just last week, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office issued yet
another patent to the University of California (UC), the University
of Vienna and French biologist Emmanuelle Charpentier that covers
methods of modulating DNA transcription using the CRISPR-Cas9 system.
This patent is the fifth in UC’s swiftly growing CRISPR-Cas9 patent
portfolio. Five additional applications have received notices of
allowance and are expected to be issued as patents in the coming months,
solidifying UC Berkeley as the birthplace of this groundbreaking
“We are excited to be partnering with IGI to bring UC Berkeley’s CRISPR
expertise to the public,” says Dr. Sharon Doyle, UC Berkeley Extension
director for the Sciences, Mathematics and Biotechnology division. “This
is a unique opportunity for anyone interested in genome-editing
technology to learn directly from scientists actively conducting CRISPR
The lecture course will include presentations from 11 IGI scientists and
will be moderated by an experienced Extension instructor. Participants
will study topics such as CRISPR immunity, genomics and sequencing
technology, DNA repair, and genome editing safety and accuracy.
A separate, optional laboratory course guides students through hands-on
CRISPR protocols, both in vitro and in vivo.
“We designed the course to be of interest to all students considering
careers in scientific research or medicine, as well as active
researchers who want to learn to perform CRISPR in the laboratory,” Dr.
Doyle continues. “The courses are also perfectly suited to professionals
in business or law who regularly interact with colleagues in life
sciences research. We plan to bring these various professionals together
to answer questions, spark new ones, and elevate the public’s knowledge
and interest in genome-editing technologies.”
To learn more about this exciting series, visit extension.berkeley.edu/static/crispr.
The lecture runs July 24–August 14; the laboratory will be held July
29–August 15. Enrollments are now being accepted.
UC Berkeley is actively looking for industry partners to sponsor this
course and future courses that are designed to broaden the reach of
CRISPR to the scientific and academic community. If your company is
interested in learning more about our industry partner program, please
contact Darek DeFreece at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About UC Berkeley Extension
Founded in 1891, UC Berkeley Extension is the continuing education
branch of the University of California, Berkeley. Today, Extension
offers more than 2,000 courses each year, including online courses,
along with more than 70 professional certificates and specialized
programs of study. Free and low-cost public events are also frequently
held as part of Extension’s service to the local community.
About Innovative Genomics Institute
The Innovative Genomics Institute (IGI) is a non-profit, academic
partnership between UC Berkeley and UC San Francisco that supports
collaborative research projects across the Bay Area. The IGI’s mission
is to develop and deploy genome engineering to cure disease, ensure food
security and sustain the environment for current and future generations.
As pioneers in genome editing, functional genomics and other
cutting-edge technologies, IGI scientists continuously push the
boundaries of science.