Periódicos Brasileiros em Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia

p. 292-300

Directions and applications of CRISPR technology in livestock research

Lamas-Toranzo, IsmaelRamos-Ibeas, PriscilaPericuesta, EvaBermejo-Álvarez, Pablo

The ablation (KO) or targeted insertion (KI) of specific genes or sequences has been essential to test their roles on a particular biological process. Unfortunately, such genome modifications have been largely limited to the mouse model, as the only way to achieve targeted mutagenesis in other mammals required from somatic cell nuclear transfer, a time- and resource-consuming technique. This difficulty has left research in livestock species largely devoided of KO and targeted KI models, crucial tools to uncover the molecular roots of any physiological or pathological process. Luckily, the eruption of site-specific endonucleases, and particularly CRISPR technology, has empowered farm animal scientists to consider projects that could not develop before. In this sense, the availability of genome modification in livestock species is meant to change the way research is performed onmany fields, switching from descriptive and correlational approaches to experimental research. In this review we will provide some guidance about how the genome can be edited by CRISPR and the possible strategies to achieve KO or KI, paying special attention to an initially overlooked phenomenon: mosaicism. Mosaicism is produced when the zygote´s genome edition occurs after its DNA has replicated, and is characterized by the presence of more than two alleles in the same individual, an undesirable outcome when attempting direct KO generation. Finally, the possible applications on different fields of livestock research, such as reproduction or infectious diseases are discussed.(AU)

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