We are developing CRISPR-based methods to make targeted gene insertions in rice without affecting yield.
CRISPR-Cas9 genome-editing technology has revolutionized agricultural research. With CRISPR-Cas9 tools, precise changes can be made to a genome in a relatively simple manner. CRISPR-Cas9 tools that knockout genes at high efficiency have been established for a large variety of plant species. However, using CRISPR-Cas9 to insert DNA fragments at a designated genomic target remains challenging.
The Ronald Lab is working to develop and optimize a CRISPR-Cas9-based method for targeted gene insertion in rice. We are also searching for genomic safe harbors in rice where transgenes can be inserted and expressed without compromising yield. Inserting transgenes at these genomic safe harbors using CRISPR-Cas9 tools offers a promising future for genetic crop improvements.
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