Pioneering Geneticist Explains Ambitious Plan to “Write” the Human Genome

October 27, 2016

(JAMA) – As part of his 1984 doctoral thesis, Church developed and described the first direct DNA sequencing method that became the precursor to modern-day next-generation sequencing approaches. Church was involved in launching the Human Genome Project and received 1 of its first grants. In 2013, his laboratory was 1 of 2 that described human genome editing using CRISPR-Cas9. More recently, he’s been working on genome-scale engineering of Escherichia coli—proof-of-concept for HGP-write. As the project moves forward, Church said his laboratory will develop and test innovations like generating transplantable organs from altered stem cells.