Sumary of Scientists harness the naturally abundant CRISPR-Cas system to edit superbugs with the hope of treating infections caused by drug resistant pathogens:
- A research team led by Dr Aixin YAN, Associate Professor from the Research Division for Molecular &
- The research opened a new avenue to genomically edit those wild bacterial species and isolates, such as those with clinical and environmental significance and those forming human microbiome.
- It also provided a framework to harness other CRISPR-Cas systems widespread in prokaryotic genomes and expand the CRISPR-based toolkits.
- The research has been published in the leading science journal Nucleic Acids Research.
- Background CRISPR-Cas system comprises the adaptive immune system in prokaryotes that disarms invading viruses by cleaving their DNA.
- The method is based on the Class 2 type II CRISPR/Cas9 system, which has revolutionised genetics and biomedical research in a plethora of organisms and was awarded the 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.
- 10% of the CRISPR-Cas systems encoded naturally in prokaryotes.
- Remarkably, CRISPR-Cas systems belonging to different classes and types are continuously identified, and they serve as a deep reservoir for the expansion of the CRISPR-based toolkits.