The first CRISPR therapy approved in the U.S. will treat sickle cell disease

The gene-editing treatment aims to help people with recurring pain crises

Two normal red blood cells are shown next to a curved, sickled blood cell

People with sickle cell disease have inflexible, curved blood cells (shown in this SEM image) that get stuck in blood vessels and block blood flow to tissues, causing bouts of debilitating pain.

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U.S. patients with sickle cell disease now have a novel treatment option: the first-ever CRISPR-based therapy.