CRISPR Therapeutics (CRSP 3.02%) is a growth stock with a lot of long-term potential. Its gene-editing business could be about to take off if exa-cel obtains approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). And while that should drive plenty of bullishness on its own, there's an even bigger reason why the stock could look like a solid long-term investment.

Gene-editing therapies could be priced high

What makes gene-editing therapies potential game changers in the healthcare industry is that they have the potential to revolutionize treatment options for diseases. A gene-editing therapy could replace years of ongoing medications and/or injections. That means health insurers, patients, and the healthcare industry as a whole could be spending less on a particular disease.

Exa-cel, for instance, is a potential functional cure for beta-thalassemia and sickle cell disease, a couple of rare blood disorders. With a functional cure, there is no longer a need to continue treating the illness. Because it can have such a positive impact on patients and reduce overall healthcare costs, it's possible for the companies developing these types of treatments to price them high and for health insurers to still cover them.

The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review, an organization that provides reports to insurance companies on medical treatments, believes that even at $1.9 million, a single dose of exa-cel would still be cost-effective. It's easy to see why the treatment may generate billions in potential revenue for CRISPR and its development partner, Vertex Pharmaceuticals. The two companies would share in the profits on exa-cel, with Vertex taking 60% and CRISPR the remaining 40%. 

A company with a potentially valuable future

Exa-cel could obtain approval within the next year as Vertex and CRISPR have submitted their rolling Biologics License Application to the FDA earlier this month. Beyond that, CRISPR has other therapies in its pipeline that are in early-stage trials, including CTX110, which is for certain blood cancers, and CTX130, which is being tested for treating renal cell carcinoma.

The big takeaway for investors is that if the company's other gene-editing therapies are as successful as exa-cel has been, then even if there isn't a sizable population in need of the therapies, they could fetch a high enough price tag where they could still generate millions in revenue for the business. Each therapy is different, but if they could be priced at over $1 million, there could be significant potential for CRISPR to generate strong revenue growth in the years ahead. And that could make its $4 billion valuation look cheap.

Is CRISPR Therapeutics stock a buy?

It's hard not to like CRISPR stock right now. Although the company isn't profitable, it's on the cusp of a big approval with exa-cel, assuming it happens within the next 12 months.

Plus, the company is well-funded with more than $1.8 billion in cash and short-term investments; that's plenty, given the company has burned through $496 million in cash from its operating activities over the course of the trailing 12 months. CRISPR can absorb multiple years of that kind of cash burn, so investors don't have to worry about a big risk of dilution and frequent share offerings.

If you're OK with taking on some risk, CRISPR could be one of the best biotech stocks to buy right now.