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Carolina Partners with ChristianaCare Gene Editing Institute to Launch CRISPR in a Box™ Kits for High School Science Labs

Updated March 6, 2024
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Carolina Biological Supply Company, a key provider of scientific educational materials, has teamed up with the ChristianaCare Gene Editing Institute to offer an innovative educational product: CRISPR in a Box™. This cost-effective kit targets students from grades 9 through 12 and beyond, incorporating Nobel Prize-recognized gene editing technology. It aims to immerse students in the practical aspects of CRISPR gene editing, a forefront scientific field. The kit, already accessible for school purchase, combines theoretical resources with practical exercises, promising an authentic laboratory experience without the need for live cells.

The CRISPR in a Box kit has demonstrated its educational value, having been embraced by over 750 students nationwide for classroom and laboratory engagements. It enables students to experience gene editing firsthand, using CRISPR technology to precisely alter DNA sequences. This toolkit, which has earned a nomination as a Best of STEM 2023 Awards Finalist, facilitates an interactive learning environment where students can simulate the role of scientists in gene editing.

CRISPR kit example

Mark Meszaros, Carolina Biological’s Vice President of Core Product Management and Innovation, expressed enthusiasm about the collaboration: “Together with the Gene Editing Institute, we want to prepare students for the future of work and look forward to new development opportunities in the rapidly advancing field of biotechnology.” The latest CRISPR in a Box iteration introduces a cell-free system for an in-depth exploration of CRISPR technology, aiming to both educate and inspire students toward future careers in biotechnology.

The product will be showcased at the upcoming National Science Teaching Association conference in Denver, and Carolina pledges ongoing updates to maintain its relevance and educational value.

Amanda Hewes, M.S., from the Gene Editing Institute, emphasized the initiative’s inclusive aim: “One of our goals at the Gene Editing Institute is to empower, inspire, and engage the next generation of scientists,” ensuring accessibility for students of diverse backgrounds. The institute further supports this by offering high school students mentorship opportunities and direct interaction with professionals in the field.

Dr. Eric Kmiec, the Institute’s Executive Director and Chief Scientific Officer, echoed this sentiment, underscoring the importance of demystifying gene editing for students, particularly from underrepresented communities, to foster trust in medical innovations and encourage a diverse future workforce in science.

CRISPR in a Box is distinguished by its practical approach to gene editing, allowing students to engage with CRISPR technology through a user-friendly, safe platform. It serves not only as an educational tool but also as a means to increase diversity within the scientific community. The kit includes comprehensive resources for teachers, including a detailed guide and digital resources, ensuring a supportive environment for both instructors and students.

Available for purchase through Carolina’s website, CRISPR in a Box represents a significant step towards integrating advanced biotechnology into classroom settings, with the potential to inspire a new generation of scientists. For more details, interested parties can visit Carolina’s website, email at curriculum@carolina.com or call (800) 334-5551.

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