Targeting Repair Pathways With Small Molecules Increases Precise Genome Editing In Pluripotent Stem Cells [article]

Stephan Riesenberg, Tomislav Maricic
2017 bioRxiv   pre-print
A now frequently used method to edit mammalian genomes uses the nucleases CRISPR/Cas9 and CRISPR/Cpf1 or the nickase CRISPR/Cas9n to introduce double-strand breaks (DSBs) which are then repaired by homology-directed repair (HDR) using synthetic or cloned DNA donor molecules carrying desired mutations. However, another pathway, the non-homologous end joining (NHEJ) pathway competes with HDR for repairing DNA breaks in cells. To increase the frequency of precise genome editing in human induced
more » ... ripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) and human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) we have tested the capacity of a number of small molecules to enhance HDR or inhibit NHEJ. We identify molecules that increase the frequency of precise genome editing including some that have additive effects when applied together. Using a mixture of such molecules, the "CRISPY" mix, we achieve 2.8-to 6.7-fold increase in precise genome editing with Cas9n, resulting in the introduction of the intended nucleotide substitutions in almost 50% of chromosomes, to our knowledge the highest editing efficiency in hiPSCs described to date. Furthermore, the CRISPY mix improves precise genome editing with Cpf1 2.9- to 4.0-fold, allowing almost 20% of chromosomes to be edited.
doi:10.1101/136374 fatcat:44g52uk3trhedgmyjyt3jpwkw4