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GE Healthcare Life Sciences’ Dharmacon Launches Innovative Gene Engineering Platform

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The Dharmacon™ Edit-R™ Gene Engineering System is a novel platform for research which creates permanent and heritable gene disruption (knockouts) in cells utilizing the CRISPR-Cas9 gene engineering technology.

Harnessing the natural defense mechanism of S. Pyogenes, the Edit-R platform comprises the three components required for gene editing in mammalian cells: (1) A plasmid encoding Cas9 nuclease, (2) a chemically-synthesized trans-activating RNA (tracRNA), and (3) a custom CRISPR RNA (crRNA) designed to target the site of interest.

The Edit-R platform greatly simplifies and accelerates the experimental requirements and workflow compared to existing approaches. Through easy co-transfection of synthetic tracrRNA and crRNAs using DharmaFECT Duo transfection reagent, researchers can program the Cas9 nuclease to target their genes of interest without the need to clone and sequence individual guide RNAs into expression vectors. The simplified workflow for this powerful reverse genetics method can generate functional knockouts in 1-2 weeks versus the current 1 month timescale.

By accessing Dharmacon’s expertise in synthesis of long, complex RNAs, researchers can order multiple synthetic crRNAs at a time, enabling them to test multiple targeting designs, to multiple genes, quickly and efficiently.