Scientists engineer new CRISPR platform for DNA targeting

Phys.org | January 23, 2019

A team that includes the scientist who first harnessed the revolutionary CRISPR-Cas9 and other systems for genome editing of eukaryotic organisms, including animals and plants, has engineered another CRISPR system, called Cas12b. The new system offers improved capabilities and options when compared to CRISPR-Cas9 systems. In a study published today in Nature Communications, Feng Zhang and colleagues at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard and the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT, with co-author Eugene Koonin at the National Institutes of Health, demonstrate that the new enzyme can be engineered to target and precisely nick or edit the genomes of human cells. The high target specificity and small size of Cas12b from Bacillus hisashii (BhCas12b) as compared to Cas9 (SpCas9), makes this new system suitable for in vivo applications. The team is now making CRISPR-Cas12b widely available for research.
The team previously identified Cas12b (then known as C2c1) as one of three promising new CRISPR enzymes in 2015, but faced a hurdle: Because Cas12b comes from thermophilic bacteria—which live in hot environments such as geysers, hot springs, volcanoes, and deep sea hydrothermal vents—the enzyme naturally only works at temperatures higher than human body temperature.

Spotlight

North Carolina’s longstanding commitment to biotechnology has played a key role in establishing a large and growing life science industry in the state. While job creation has been in decline for many of the state’s traditionally strong industries, jobs in North Carolina’s life science industry increased 29% from 2001 to 2008 with an average pay in 2008 of $74,829, which is 90% higher than the state’s average private sector wages.

Spotlight

North Carolina’s longstanding commitment to biotechnology has played a key role in establishing a large and growing life science industry in the state. While job creation has been in decline for many of the state’s traditionally strong industries, jobs in North Carolina’s life science industry increased 29% from 2001 to 2008 with an average pay in 2008 of $74,829, which is 90% higher than the state’s average private sector wages.

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GenScript and Gladstone-UCSF Institute of Genomic Immunology Collaborate on Groundbreaking Non-Viral Cell Therapy Study

Genscript Biotech Corporation | September 23, 2022

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Intravacc | September 12, 2022

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INDUSTRIAL IMPACT

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FogPharma | November 22, 2022

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