Cells recognize signals through transcription factors (TF), proteins that regulate gene expression. Inserted TF genes can alter cell behaviour and are used to design synthetic gene regulatory networks (SGRN).
TAL effectors (TE) are one such TF, but their expensive and slow synthesis, and metabolic burden have made their use difficult. We tested CRISPR/Cas system (CS), which binds to target DNA by specific RNA sequence, as alternative solution. Comparing the specificity and efficiency of both proved similar. Combining RNA in a cell for targeting multiple binding sites provided significant evidence.
Results show CS enables faster and cheaper assembly of complex systems and can be used for SGRN, providing new ways of directed cell therapy, metabolic engineering and development of biosensors.
Ana Halužan Vasle
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