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Can Gene Editing Actually Do That?

Crispr was used to correct a mutation in a gene linked to muscular dystrophy in mice. From left: healthy tissue, untreated diseased tissue and tissue from the same diseased mouse after treatment. Christopher Nelson

A new technique known as Crispr has revolutionized humans' ability to edit DNA, fueling excitement, concern and confusion. See how much you know about what’s possible by choosing whether the advances below have already happened, are hypothetically possible or remain in the realm of fiction. 

This week, scientists reported that they had successfully edited harmful mutations out of genes in human embryos. It’s just the latest in a string of gene editing firsts facilitated by a system called Crispr-Cas9, which has enabled scientists, entrepreneurs -- even middle school students -- to snip, insert and delete genetic material with unprecedented precision and ease.

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