Breaking News
March 18, 2019 - Taking painkillers during pregnancy is not responsible for asthma risk in children, study shows
March 18, 2019 - Prediagnosis Psychiatric Care Linked to Worse Cancer Mortality
March 18, 2019 - Paris hospital halts stool study after donor deluge
March 18, 2019 - Partial oral antibiotic therapy shows efficacy and safety in patients with infectious endocarditis
March 18, 2019 - Olympus improves access to science education through BioBus collaboration
March 18, 2019 - Depression screening does not improve quality of life in heart attack patients
March 18, 2019 - Echocardiography may aid in patient selection for TMVR
March 18, 2019 - Are ‘Inactive’ Ingredients in Your Drugs Really So Harmless?
March 18, 2019 - Scientists tackle rare retinal disease in unique research project
March 18, 2019 - Death By A Thousand Clicks
March 18, 2019 - Absorbable, antibiotic-eluting envelope can reduce rate of cardiac device infections
March 18, 2019 - Hormonal treatment associated with depression in men with prostate cancer
March 18, 2019 - Porvair Sciences launches reinforced 96-well deep round microplate
March 18, 2019 - Simplified catheter ablation could slash waiting lists for atrial fibrillation patients
March 18, 2019 - BFR therapy as part of rehabilitation following ACL surgery may slow bone loss
March 18, 2019 - A human model to test implants for cataract surgery
March 18, 2019 - New risk adjustment model could reduce financial penalty for safety net hospitals
March 18, 2019 - NHS cancer patients’ wait to start treatment worrying
March 18, 2019 - Inventiva Announces Results from Phase IIb Clinical Trial with Lanifibranor in Systemic Sclerosis
March 18, 2019 - Cologuard
March 18, 2019 - Researchers find evidence of prenatal environment tuning genomic imprinting
March 18, 2019 - Dolomite Bio launches novel Nadia product family for single-cell research
March 18, 2019 - Intellipharmaceutics Announces Resubmission of New Drug Application to the U.S. FDA for its Oxycodone ER
March 18, 2019 - Excessive gestational weight gain tied to maternal morbidity
March 18, 2019 - RCEM issues position statement on metrics to supplement four-hour standard target
March 17, 2019 - Noncontrast Brain MRI Effective for Monitoring Multiple Sclerosis
March 17, 2019 - Brain region plays key role in regulation of parenting behavior, study finds
March 17, 2019 - Natural speed limit on DNA replication sets pace for life’s first steps
March 17, 2019 - New research reveals overlooked impact of herbicide glyphosate on the environment
March 17, 2019 - Molecular patterns could help predict relapse risk in breast cancer patients
March 17, 2019 - Study confirms sensitivity of microbiological cultures for detecting cholera
March 17, 2019 - Scientists Spot Clues to Predicting Breast Cancer’s Return
March 17, 2019 - Scientists identify gene that keeps PTSD-like behavior at bay in female mice
March 17, 2019 - New method would allow doctors to detect earliest stages of cancers in the lymph nodes
March 17, 2019 - Cholesterol protein discovery raises hope for smarter drugs
March 17, 2019 - New insect medium delivers high viable cell density growth and protein yield
March 17, 2019 - Opioid crisis brings concerns about heart dangers
March 17, 2019 - Resistance Training May Prevent Type 2 Diabetes Progression
March 17, 2019 - Bioluminescence sensors make new approaches to drug discovery possible
March 17, 2019 - New FDA Rules Aim to Keep Kids From Flavored E-Cigarettes
March 17, 2019 - Vitamin B3 analogue boosts production of blood cells
March 17, 2019 - Government cuts to stop smoking services have detrimental impact on public health
March 17, 2019 - Common tool to assess potential adoptive parents lags behind societal changes
March 17, 2019 - Patients’ own cells could be the key to treating Crohn’s disease
March 17, 2019 - Diagnostic delays common in inflammatory bowel disease
March 17, 2019 - Study uncovers dramatic differences in the brains of Hispanics with dementia
March 17, 2019 - Study describes epigenetic loss that changes how cells obtain energy from cancer
March 16, 2019 - Active Bathing in Non-ICU Setting Does Not Cut Infections
March 16, 2019 - How the immune system maintains a healthy gut microbiota
March 16, 2019 - Bacteria ‘trap’ could help in the fight against antimicrobial resistance
March 16, 2019 - Hospital work environment associated with all EHR usability outcomes
March 16, 2019 - Study unravels mystery behind how the brain encodes time when forming long-term memories
March 16, 2019 - Light physical activity may lower risk of cardiovascular disease in older women
March 16, 2019 - USP15 enzyme could potentially lead to new treatments for breast, pancreatic cancer
March 16, 2019 - After Chinese Infant Gene-Editing Scandal, U.S. Health Officials Join Call for a Ban
March 16, 2019 - PACS1 syndrome – Genetics Home Reference
March 16, 2019 - Researchers discover an unexpected organization of antimicrobial molecules that amplifies immune response
March 16, 2019 - With New Study, Era of Open-Heart Surgery for Aortic Stenosis May be Ending
March 16, 2019 - Dolomite Bio introduces high throughput sNuc-Seq protocol for its Nadia Instrument
March 16, 2019 - New course prepares materials scientists for biomedical testing
March 16, 2019 - Finding clues to a functional HIV cure
March 16, 2019 - People with chronic periodontitis have higher risk for dementia
March 16, 2019 - Few heart care recommendations are based on rigorous study
March 16, 2019 - Colorectal cancer diagnosed at early age is distinct from that in older patients
March 16, 2019 - Researchers use MRI and AI techniques at birth to predict cognitive development at age 2
March 16, 2019 - Discarding information from the brain linked to more mental effort, finds study
March 16, 2019 - OTA International supplement provides current snapshot and forward look at global trauma systems
March 16, 2019 - NIH trial to track outcomes of liver transplantation from HIV+ donors to HIV+ recipients
March 16, 2019 - Apple Heart Study shows how wearable technology can help detect heart problem
March 16, 2019 - Researchers determine factors that cause stress development in the human body
March 16, 2019 - Elderly Men Undertreated for Osteoporosis
March 16, 2019 - People with chronic pain are coping with the help of Pinterest, new study reveals
March 16, 2019 - New study could reveal the complex interaction between languages and human beings who use them
March 16, 2019 - Tufts engineers develop new tool to identify metabolic signatures linked to disease
March 16, 2019 - New proteomics-based test could aid in early detection of ovarian cancer
March 16, 2019 - New research opens possibility of using sperm taken from testicles to overcome infertility
March 16, 2019 - Scientists find new proof that narcolepsy is an autoimmune disease
March 16, 2019 - FDA OKs a New Generic of the Blood Pressure Drug Valsartan to Ease Shortage Due to Recalls
March 16, 2019 - Eliminating smoking and obesity could affect racial health disparities
March 16, 2019 - Wearable tracking device achieves higher accuracy in position tracking using thermal sensors
Researchers modify CRISPR to reorganize genome | News Center

Researchers modify CRISPR to reorganize genome | News Center

image_pdfDownload PDFimage_print

Researchers at Stanford University have reworked CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing technology to manipulate the genome in three-dimensional space, allowing them to ferry genetic snippets to different locations in a cell’s nucleus. 

The new technique, dubbed CRISPR-genome organization or simply CRISPR-GO, uses a modified CRISPR protein to reorganize the genome in three dimensions. If CRISPR is like molecular scissors, then CRISPR-GO is like molecular tweezers, grabbing specific bits of the genome and plunking them down in new locations of the nucleus. But it’s more than just physical relocation: Displacing genetic elements can change how they function.

The research sheds new light on how the genome’s spatial organization in the nucleus governs the function of the cell overall.

“The question of why spatial organization in a cell matters is an important one, and it’s also not one that scientists agree on,” said Stanley Qi, PhD, assistant professor of bioengineering and of chemical and systems biology. “CRISPR-GO could provide an opportunity to answer that question by enabling us to target, move and relocate very specific stretches of DNA, and see how their new placements in the nucleus change how they function.”

Most mammalian cells contain a nucleus that houses more than 6 feet of DNA, if stretched out in a line. This genetic material determines the fate of the cells and, if out of place or damaged, can lead to disease. Previous studies have shown that DNA tends to clump in certain areas in the nucleus. How that placement affects the DNA’s function, however, is still unclear.

In the proof-of-principle study, Qi investigated three distinct subregions of the nucleus using CRISPR-GO, testing an overarching hypothesis: Do genes and other genetic elements behave differently in different zones of the nucleus?

So far, their data show that specific compartments and some free-floating bodies of proteins in the nucleus can sway the function of repositioned DNA. Depending on where the genetic materials are located, some nuclear regions repress gene expression and some accelerate telomere growth, and subsequently cell division. One protein body may even hold the power to suppress tumor formation.

A study detailing this research was published online Oct. 11 in Cell. Qi is the senior author. Postdoctoral scholar Haifeng Wang, PhD, is the lead author.

Bridging the gap

Demystifying the physical details of the genome has proved to be a tedious task, but there are some existing technologies that allow scientists to peer into cells and see how their guts are physically organized. What’s been missing is a way to tamper with this organization. CRISPR-GO is the first to offer researchers a means to do so.

By decommissioning the “cutting” mechanism of CRISPR-Cas9, the editing tool becomes more of a delivery system, which Qi used to deliver small stretches of DNA via a programmable guide RNA to a new location in the nucleus.>

There are three essential parts of CRISPR-GO. First, there’s what Qi calls the “address” of the genetic target that you want to relocate — a stretch of DNA that’s targeted with a complementary strand of binding RNA. Then, you need the destination’s address — the specific portion of DNA in a nuclear compartment to which you want to move the chromatin. Finally, there’s the “bridge,” which, in this case, is a catalyst that sparks the congealing of the target DNA to its new home in the nucleus. 

“Kids often like to build little railroads to help trains get from one station to another,” said Qi. “It’s not so different from what we’re doing here.”

Different room, different function

Qi describes the functionalities of the nuclear compartments like the spaces of a house. In every room of your home, you do different things — in the kitchen, you cook; in the bedroom, you sleep. In the nucleus of a cell, the same concept applies. There are multiple compartments in the nucleus that all have specific roles in upholding cell functionality overall. Qi and his lab investigated three distinct areas of the nucleus, testing whether they could somehow shift the function of chromatin depending on where they moved it.

Tagged with:

About author

Related Articles