Your missing links are here (16 July 2020)
By: Karen O'Hanlon Cohrt - Jul. 16, 2020
- US researchers exploit unusual bacterial toxin to develop the first precise gene editor for mitochondrial DNA. This could be the turning point for the treatment of rare mitochondrial diseases.
- Low transfection efficiency and toxicity are significant problems associated with viral-based CRISPR delivery. Researchers in Sweden and China have found a solution; by co-delivering small plasmids, it was possible to deliver large size CRISPR/Cas9 vectors in hard-to-transfect human cells.
- Anti-CRISPR proteins have proven valuable as control switches for gene editing based on CRISPR-Cas. New research reveals a phage-encoded anti-CRISPR protein that enables complete evasion of CRISPR-Cas 13a immunity. Read an independant perspective on this work here.
- The histone chaperone FACT governs Cas9 turnover and modifies genome manipulation in human cells.
- Researchers exploit the repetitive nature of transposable elements to develop a an inducible, stringent and non-leaky CRISPR safety switch that can be used to eliminate cell lines that are resistant to DNA breaks (preprint on BioRxiv).
- Researchers at Duke University used CRISPR to fluorescently tag basement membrane proteins in transparent worms. The tagged proteins were then trackable, allowing the researchers to record the first ever time lapse footage of the latticed network that surrounds and supports most mammalian tissues.
- Scientists from John Hopkins Medicine use light to trigger rapid CRISPR-based DNA cuts in cancer cell lines, paving the way for new insights into the events that lead to cellular aging and cancer.
- Verve Therapeutics demonstrates successful use of base editing as proof-of-concept to treat coronary heart disease. One-time in vivo base editing was used to specifically turn off target genes in the liver to lower the blood levels of either LDL cholesterol or triglyceride-rich lipoproteins, two factors leading to coronary atherosclerosis.
- Looking to invest in CRISPR? CRISPR Therapeutics Announces Proposed Offering of Common Shares. The company will use the anticipated €400 M funding boost to further a number of candidate therapies in their pipeline. More about this news here.
- Noile-Immune Biotech (Japan) and C4U Corporation (Japan) join forces to develop CRISPR/Cas3 technology aimed at proliferating and trafficking immune cells into solid tumours.
- Sherlock Biosciences partners with binx health to bring the first point-of-care CRISPR product to market. The duo will work to roll out Sherlock’s rapid CRISPR-based COVID-19 test to doctor’s offices, grocery stores and workplaces.
- Interesting read in Nature Biotechnology about the impact of COVID-19 on diagnostic innovation. This gives a good round up of COVID-19 diagnostics approaches including CRISPR –based strategies CARMEN, SHERLOCK and CRISPR-Chip.
Vision and opinion
- Opinion Piece: The Bio Revolution is changing business and society.