The CRISPR (clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeat)-Cas9 (CRISPR-associated nuclease 9) system is poised to transform developmental biology by providing a simple, efficient method to precisely manipulate the genome of virtually any developing organism. This RNA-guided nuclease (RGN)-based approach already has been effectively used to induce targeted mutations in multiple genes simultaneously, create conditional alleles, and generate endogenously tagged proteins. Illustrating the adaptability of RGNs, the genomes of >20 different plant and animal species as well as multiple cell lines and primary cells have been successfully modified. Here we review the current and potential uses of RGNs to investigate genome function during development.
Keywords: CRISPR; Cas9; RNA-guided nuclease; development; genome editing; genome engineering.
© 2014 Harrison et al.; Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.