A Netflix Series Explores the Brave New World of Crispr

A Netflix Series Explores the Brave New World of Crispr

In a scene from Unnatural Selection, villagers in Burkina Faso consider a proposal to combat malaria by releasing mosquitoes engineered with Crispr to collapse the insects’ population. The alien glare of bioluminescent bacteria bathes David Ishee’s face in green as he holds a petri dish over an LED light. Around him, the thick Mississippi gloom swallows the plywood walls of the shed where Ishee spends nights and weekends trying to cut and paste a jellyfish gene into the sperm of one of his 150-pound male mastiffs. The full-time oil plant operator, part-time dog breeder-slash-biohacker is trying to make glow-in-the-dark puppies . “I had assumed that getting DNA and making changes cost millions of dollars, and that you needed a huge lab and a research team and all that stuff,” he says. “But you’d be surprised what you can find on YouTube.” This is the opening scene of Unnatural Selection, Netflix’s provocative new docuseries about Crispr gene-editing technology , which premieres today on the online streaming platform. But don’t let the canine masturbation scenes and self-experimentation soapboxing scare you off. Ishee is just one character among many you’ll meet in four fast-paced, hour-long episodes, a bit player in a global […]

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