Yizhu Wang

Controlling CRISPR/Cas9 Gene Editing with Light

Blog Post created by Yizhu Wang on May 13, 2015

Tags: CRISPR/Cas9, gene editing, animal model, gene editing

Summery:

For a long time, scientists have been trying to manipulate genes. Recently, University of Pittsburgh in USA Alexander Deiters finds a way to control this process with higher accuracy . Light is what he uses. Deiters and his team for the first time achieve the technology breakthrough. they publish study results on the Journal of Chemistry "Journal of the American Chemical Society"recently.

 

Body:

For a long time, scientists have been trying to manipulate genes. Recently, University of Pittsburgh in USA Alexander Deiters finds a way to control this process with higher accuracy . Light is what he uses. Deiters and his team for the first time achieve the technology breakthrough. they publish study results on the Journal of Chemistry "Journal of the American Chemical Society"recently.

Since 2013, scientists had begun using an gene editing tools called CRISPR/Cas9. This method is to use a bacterial derived protein (Cas9) and a synthetic guide RNA, causing double strand breaks at specific locations of the genome. This allows researchers to remove a gene, changing its function, or introducing a desired mutation.

In fact, CRISPR (short palindromic repeat DNA sequences clustered in regular intervals) method has shown great prospects, which enables researchers to treat cystic fibrosis and sickle cell anemia, establishes experimental animal model simulating human disease and cultivates wheat lines resistant to powdery mildew disease. (Extended reading: http://www.creative-animodel.com/Animal-Model-Development/Animal-Models-of-Disea se.html)

Professor of chemistry Deiters at the University of Pittsburgh School of Arts and Sciences Kenneth P. Dietrich and colleagues at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, through a series of experiments, find a lysine residue (lysine is an amino acid) in Cas9 which can be replaced by analogues activated by light.

This method developed by Deiters, generates a non-functional Cas9 protein called "caged". The "cage" will be removed only by exposure to activate enzyme and thereby to activate gene editing.

Deiters said: "this method can make people better design cells or animal genes than ever with space and time control. Previously, if you want to knock out a gene, it is limited to control the time and place genes appear. The design of a light switch in Cas, provides a more accurate editing tool. You can say, 'in this cell, at this point, at this time when I want to modify the genome regions'."

Deiters points out that, after the improvement and with the passage of time, controlling the place in which a gene will be manipulated may contribute to the elimination of "distance effect", and may make to an unknown resolution on genetic research hitherto.

 

About the author:

Creative Animodel is serving CRISPR/Cas9 service for a long time. It also provides animal model of diseases, knock out or knock in service. If you want to know more about animal model of diseases, go to http://www.creative-animodel.com/Animal-Model-Development/Animal-Models-of-Disea se.html. For knock out introduction at http://www.creative-animodel.com/Animal-Model-Development/Knockout-Services.

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