Precise RNA editing by recruiting endogenous ADARs with antisense oligonucleotides

Nat Biotechnol. 2019 Feb;37(2):133-138. doi: 10.1038/s41587-019-0013-6. Epub 2019 Jan 28.


Site-directed RNA editing might provide a safer or more effective alternative to genome editing in certain clinical scenarios. Until now, RNA editing has relied on overexpression of exogenous RNA editing enzymes or of endogenous human ADAR (adenosine deaminase acting on RNA) enzymes. Here we describe the engineering of chemically optimized antisense oligonucleotides that recruit endogenous human ADARs to edit endogenous transcripts in a simple and programmable way, an approach we call RESTORE (recruiting endogenous ADAR to specific transcripts for oligonucleotide-mediated RNA editing). We observed almost no off-target editing, and natural editing homeostasis was not perturbed. We successfully applied RESTORE to a panel of standard human cell lines and human primary cells and demonstrated repair of the clinically relevant PiZZ mutation, which causes α1-antitrypsin deficiency, and editing of phosphotyrosine 701 in STAT1, the activity switch of the signaling factor. RESTORE requires only the administration of an oligonucleotide, circumvents ectopic expression of proteins, and represents an attractive approach for drug development.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • 3' Untranslated Regions
  • Adenosine Deaminase / genetics*
  • Amino Acid Motifs
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Drug Design
  • HeLa Cells
  • Hep G2 Cells
  • Humans
  • Interferon-alpha / pharmacology
  • Mutation
  • Oligonucleotides, Antisense / genetics*
  • Open Reading Frames
  • Phosphotyrosine / chemistry
  • RNA Editing*
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • RNA-Binding Proteins / genetics*
  • STAT1 Transcription Factor / genetics
  • Signal Transduction
  • alpha 1-Antitrypsin / genetics
  • alpha 1-Antitrypsin Deficiency / genetics


  • 3' Untranslated Regions
  • Interferon-alpha
  • Oligonucleotides, Antisense
  • RNA, Messenger
  • RNA-Binding Proteins
  • SERPINA1 protein, human
  • STAT1 Transcription Factor
  • STAT1 protein, human
  • alpha 1-Antitrypsin
  • Phosphotyrosine
  • ADAR protein, human
  • Adenosine Deaminase