Cas13d-mediated multiplex RNA targeting confers a broad-spectrum resistance against RNA viruses in potato

Commun Biol. 2023 Aug 17;6(1):855. doi: 10.1038/s42003-023-05205-2.


CRISPR-Cas systems endow the bacterial and archaeal species with adaptive immune mechanisms to fend off invading phages and foreign plasmids. The class 2 type VI CRISPR/Cas effector Cas13d has been harnessed to confer the protection against RNA viruses in diverse eukaryotic species. However a vast number of different viruses can potentially infect the same host plant resulting in mixed infection, thus necessitating the generation of crops with broad-spectrum resistance to multiple viruses. Here we report the repurposing of CRISPR/Cas13d coupled with an endogenous tRNA-processing system (polycistronic tRNA-gRNA, PTG) to target the multiple potato RNA viruses. Expression of Cas13d and four different gRNAs were observed in transgenic potato lines expressing the Cas13d/PTG construct. We show that the Cas13d/PTG transgenic plants exhibit resistance to either PVY, PVS, PVX or PLRV alone or two/three viruses simultaneously by reducing viral accumulation in plant cells. In sum, our findings provide an efficient strategy for engineering crops that can simultaneously resist infection by multiple RNA viruses.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Archaea
  • Crops, Agricultural
  • RNA
  • RNA Processing, Post-Transcriptional
  • RNA Viruses*
  • Solanum tuberosum* / genetics


  • RNA