Please read my previous post on Gene Editing first.
Then have a look at a recent article by Eric Lander http://www.technologyreview.com/view/545741/a-scientists-contested-history-of-crispr/ about the history of the CRISPER/CAS “invention” or “discovery”, take your pick, which attempts to track the numerous findings that has been required to develop this new tool. Editas is apparently the first of several companies to make it to Wall St. with an IPO soon, looking to raise 120M. There will be more.
It will be very interesting to see what the patent office does with the competing claims for “ownership”. Already there are negative comments about the Lander piece, mainly because he does not disclose his own commercial interest in one of these companies. Also, he was a bit sparse on giving credit to the two women best known for spearheading this effort, but he certainly did include them- so that is a bit of a softer call.
But as for conflict of interest, it is here in science & medicine just as it pervades so many other aspects of civilization. So when we read about gene editing in years to come- certain to make headlines- be aware- be aware of what we really know for sure and what other people just want you to believe is true.