Assessing and advancing the safety of CRISPR-Cas tools: from DNA to RNA editing

Nat Commun. 2023 Jan 13;14(1):212. doi: 10.1038/s41467-023-35886-6.


CRISPR-Cas gene editing has revolutionized experimental molecular biology over the past decade and holds great promise for the treatment of human genetic diseases. Here we review the development of CRISPR-Cas9/Cas12/Cas13 nucleases, DNA base editors, prime editors, and RNA base editors, focusing on the assessment and improvement of their editing precision and safety, pushing the limit of editing specificity and efficiency. We summarize the capabilities and limitations of each CRISPR tool from DNA editing to RNA editing, and highlight the opportunities for future improvements and applications in basic research, as well as the therapeutic and clinical considerations for their use in patients.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • CRISPR-Cas Systems* / genetics
  • DNA / genetics
  • Endonucleases / metabolism
  • Gene Editing
  • Humans
  • RNA Editing* / genetics


  • DNA
  • Endonucleases