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Behind-the-scenes of the Isolation of the Thermostable IgnaviCas9 From a Yellowstone Hot Spring

Posted by Christina Mork on Nov 12, 2019 9:00:00 AM

In 2008 the Quake Lab at Stanford University became interested in exploring biological dark matter – large tracts of the microbial tree of life that remained unexplored. Using new single-cell sequencing approaches, the lab was able to eliminate the need for axenic (pure) laboratory cultures to study these microbes. From 16S rRNA sequencing, hot springs were known to be diversity hotspots containing abundant biological dark matter and so the lab organized a sampling trip to Yellowstone National Park (YNP).

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Topics: CRISPR, Cas Proteins

Choosing a CRISPR Nuclease: Site Accessibility, Specificity, and Sensitivity

Posted by Andrew Hempstead on Nov 5, 2019 8:28:59 AM

In January 2016 we first published a blog post titled: Which Cas9 Do I Choose for My CRISPR Experiment? The three years flew by, but since then, scientists have adapted CRISPR nucleases for many more specific research needs. In this update, we will focus on the most recent advances and how some of these variants may be appropriate for your specific research question.

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Topics: CRISPR, Cas Proteins

Prime Editing: Adding Precision and Flexibility to CRISPR Editing

Posted by Jennifer Tsang on Oct 24, 2019 9:26:53 AM

There are over 75,000 pathogenic genetic variants that have been identified in humans and catalogued in the ClinVar database. Previously developed genome editing methods using nucleases and base editors have the potential to correct only a minority of those variants in most cell types. A new technique from David Liu’s lab at the Broad Institute could add more precision and flexibility to the CRISPR editing world.

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Topics: CRISPR, Cas Proteins, CRISPR gRNAs, Base Editing

CRISPR-Cas14: a family of small DNA-targeting enzymes enabling high-fidelity SNP genotyping

Posted by Benoit Giquel on Nov 29, 2018 8:53:18 AM

Before being adapted by scientists to edit the genome of virtually any organisms on this planet, CRISPR-Cas systems were merely adaptive immune systems that provide bacteria protection against infectious agents. Several enzymes behind this immunity have already been discovered and studied but it is only the tip of the iceberg as it has been predicted that many others are still unknown.

In this quest to discover new and maybe more efficient Cas systems, Jennifer Doudna’s lab analyzed metagenomic datasets to try to determine whether simpler and maybe smaller Cas systems could exist in nature.

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Topics: CRISPR, Cas Proteins

Finding nucleic acids with SHERLOCK and DETECTR

Posted by Alyssa Cecchetelli on Aug 30, 2018 8:28:06 AM

Sensitive and specific nucleic acid detection is crucial for clinical diagnostics, genotyping, and biotechnological advancements. Current methods of nucleic acid detection however, either lack the sensitivity or the specificity to detect nucleic acids at low concentrations and/or are too expensive, time-consuming, and complex to use outside of standard laboratories. Recently scientists have utilized CRISPR-Cas9 protein variants, Cas13, and Cas12a, to develop simple, portable, and inexpensive platforms to reliably detect nucleic acids at the atomolar level.

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Topics: CRISPR, Cas Proteins, Other CRISPR Tools

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