Argonaute protein from Natronobacterium is a DNA-guided endonuclease

Gao, F., et. al. (2016) Nature Biotechnology doi: 10.1038/nbt.3547

DNA editing by CRISPR/Cas9 has overtaken previous gene editing technologies as the most commonly used editing method. However despite its widespread use limitations remain.  To overcome these limitations Gao et al. searched a different group of endonucleases called Argonautes.  Argonautes are the main endonuclease involved in RNA-guided RNA silencing, however a subset of Argonautes have been identified that use single stranded DNA to target DNA in extremophile bacteria.  Using BLAST Gao et al. identified an Argonaute protein from a non-extremophile that can cleave DNA both in vivo and in vitro. Further work is needed before it can be used in complex mammalian systems.

Author: Advanced Analytical

Advanced Analytical Technologies, Inc. (AATI) simplifies complex genomics workflows to accelerate research and discovery in pharmaceuticals, life science, biofuels, biotechnology and healthcare.

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