The CRISPR-Cas System

世界杯365bet下载The Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR) and CRISPR-associated (Cas) proteins underpin an RNA-guided adaptive immune system that protects bacteria and archaea from invading genetic elements such as plasmids and phages. In the system, fragments from foreign DNA are captured and integrated into the host genome as spacer DNA at the CRISPR locus. The locus is then transcribed, and the resulting RNAs are processed into small CRISPR RNAs (crRNAs) that incorporate into a variety of effector complexes to guide degradation of the foreign DNA or RNA in a manner analogous to RNA interference in eukaryotic organisms. The CRISPR-Cas system has been quickly adopted as a powerful genome editing tool, gaining momentum in functional genomic studies and also opening an avenue for the treatment of a variety of genetic diseases.

Our scientists have previously made landmark findings in dissecting structure and mechanisms of two effector complexes, Csm (type III-A) and Cmr (type III-B) for CRISPR-mediated antiviral immunity inSulfolobus solfataricus. Currently, we are applying crRNA-based gene knockouts to investigate various aspects of tumorigenesis in cultured cells and mouse tumor models, screen for anti-cancer targets and explore crRNA-based biological therapeutics.