CRISPR & The Mammoth In The Living Room

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Its high time we all addressed the woolly mammoth in the living room! That was my thought just the other day after yet another story emerged promising that the long extinct animal would soon be alive and well again. Bringing back the woolly mammoth is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the science of gene editing, made possible by the CRISPR Cas9 technology we hear so much about today.

The Daily Mail reports….

Researchers are using a genetic technique called CRISPR-Cas9.

The system allows the ‘cut and paste’ manipulation of strands of DNA with a precision not seen before.

Using this technique, scientists could cut and paste preserved mammoth DNA into Asian elephants to create and elephant-mammoth hybrid.

‘We have already revived dozens of genes and are testing them in elephant cells’, lead researcher Professor George Church


Bringing back the woolly mammoth is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the topic of gene editing etc. The truth is that this story featuring the mammoth is hiding all the other weird science that spins off from the ability to edit & tweak genetic code. As you will see, it opens the lid of Pandora’s box to a whole host of things that once out, cant be put back in.

First, we need to take a look at just what CRIPR-Cas9 is. CRISPR or CRISPR-Cas9 is commonly used to refer to a revolutionary genome editing technology that enables efficient and precise genomic modifications in a wide variety of organisms and tissues. In the laboratory, CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing is achieved by transfecting a cell with the Cas9 protein along with a specially designed guide RNA (gRNA) that directs the cut through hybridization with its matching genomic sequence. When the cell repairs that break, errors can occur to generate a gene knockout or additional genetic modifications can be introduced.

One of the major players in the field of gene editing is a man named George Church. Church is known for his professional contributions in the sequencing of genomes and interpreting such data, in synthetic biology and genome engineering, and in an emerging area of neuroscience that proposes to map brain activity and establish a “functional connectome.” Among these, Church is known for pioneering the specialized fields of personal genomics and synthetic biology.

George Church, professor of Genetics and Director of the Center for Computational Genetics at Harvard Medical School in Boston MA. Church has launched The Personal Genome Project, an effort to make those correlations on an unprecedented scale available. (Photo by Rick Friedman/Corbis via Getty Images)

He was in the media lately talking about how we should all put our genomic information onto the block chain so we can make money from our life code. His argument is that companies such as 23andMe & AncestryDNA are already profiting from those that have used their service by sending them a sample of saliva. These companies take our DNA & sell them on to pharmaceutical companies involved in drug trials etc for big bucks.

I can see the logic in his thinking. Why should these companies that offer to decode specific data relating to our ancestry ect make money from our DNA when we ourselves could make a profit? However, i think there is something else at play here – the push to get our DNA online and into the hands of bio-engineers such as Church & others.

Why would they want our DNA? Well it contains not only information about us, but holds data built up over the ages from the genetic memory that is passed from one generation to the next. Just what secrets it holds, well, that is up for conjecture.

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Aside from the gene specific weapons that could be produced off the back of this information, it may hold the key to not just unlocking secrets of the past & hand the bioengineers to recreate ancestors from our past. Recently an experiment in Iceland proved that if you had enough genetic data from the descendants from one individual, it is possible to recreate his/her genome from the information contained within the DNA of those descendants.

Could it be that in an underground laboratory somewhere they are trying to bring back the giants that once roamed the earth? Sounds very twighlight zone admittedly, but never put anything beyond the priesthood of science today.

To take things even further, the editing of genes gives rise to the potential for humans to be genetically modified in a way similar to the “gmo” foods we hear so much about.

A recent article in highlighted just this.

It’s called gene doping. Scientists are figuring out how to literally rewrite our genetic code through genetic modification and gene editing. That means tomorrow’s athletes could take the field with genes purposely, synthetically altered.

If they are talking about the potential for athletes to use this technology to give themselves an unfair advantage, what else could it signal?

We often say that the science/technologies we see released to the public is maybe 50-75 years behind what is actually around today. So, if this is the case, just what have they been using gene editing for before it was released to the public?

One thing i can think of & we get into on the show is the ability to tweak the genes of individuals, or even create an entire genome from scratch, to produce what would be commonly referred to as super-soldiers.

Before you think i have lost the plot, just think about it. We seen how in the case of the woolly mammoth they are planning to use an artificial womb to grow the animal, so there is nothing to stop a genetically modified embryo being brought to term in the same way. No one can deny that this would be something the military would love to utilize. To give soldiers the ability to see in the dark, run for longer periods of time compared to us humans 1.0 & just about anything else you can think of to get an advantage over the enemy.


One of the co-hosts on The Kev Baker Show discusses a recent caller into Clyde Lewis’ Ground Zero show in which they talked about “monsters” that were fighting in Syria. This reminded me of a documentary i had watched & one of the people featured mentioned how when ISIS fighters turned up, around 12 – 20 of them, they were able to take on and defeat hundreds of Syrian Arab Army forces. He described it to being as if the ISIS fighters had some “supernatural” force within in or behind them. Could we be talking super soldiers?

Sticking with ISIS there was a very strange video release a couple of years ago where they were walking orange jump suited individuals along a beach towards their death. Something about the video was strange, very strange indeed. It appears as though either the hostages were dwarfs, or their captors dressed in black were giants. 

Not only that, but the Syrian ambassador to the United Nations made what is now an infamous speech in which he talked about the “genetically modified” figheres within his country. Genetically modified? Dont believe me, then check this out….

As if that wasnt strange enough, lets go back to a speech by Gen. Mark Milley. In 2016 the then Chief Of Staff, US ARMY, warned of the threats we face today, including “hybrid” armies and “little green men”…

So, as you can see, it is most certainly the time to address this mammoth in the living room, for behind it lies so much more than a potential to open a real life Jurassic Park. From super soldiers to cloning & beyond, CRISPR truly is one of the keys to opening Pandora’s box.



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