With this new paper, Qi highlights recent achievements in applying CRISPR to crop breeding and ways in which these tools have been combined with other breeding methods to achieve goals that may not have been possible in the past. He aims to give a glimpse of what CRISPR holds for the future, beyond the scope of basic gene editing.
"When people think of CRISPR, they think of genome editing, but in fact CRISPR is really a versatile system that allows you to home in on a lot of things to target, recruit, or promote certain aspects already in the DNA," says Qi. "You can regulate activation or suppression of certain genes by using CRISPR not as a cutting tool, but instead as a binding tool to attract activators or repressors to induce traits."
Qi - Prospect - Proteins - DNA - Sequences
Additionally, Qi discusses the prospect of recruiting proteins that can help to visualize DNA sequences, and the potential for grouping desirable traits together in the genome. "I call this gene shuffling," says Qi. "This is designed to move very important trait genes close to each other to physically and genetically link them so they always stick together in traditional crossbreeding, making it much easier to select for crops with all the traits you want."
These are just some of the examples of future directions Qi hopes to cultivate and draw more attention to with this paper. "I hope this review [in Nature Plants] will open eyes to show that there is a lot to be offered by CRISPR, going beyond the current status of genome editing, but also outside of just editing to see where the whole field can lead down the road."
Process - CRISPR - Applications - Animals - Humans
This includes the process of taking CRISPR applications in animals and humans and applying them to crops in ways that haven't been done before. For example, CRISPR technology...
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