Opening Chromatin and Improving CRISPR/Cas9 editing with Engineered Pioneer Factors
The question investigated is whether synthetic pioneer factors (SPiFs) can increase the efficiency of CRISPR editing. Closed chromatin poses a barrier for CRISPR/Cas9, overcome with SPiFs, which can access DNA within closed chromatin. Since the Haynes Lab has already developed a library of SPiFs, this research focuses on analyzing the effects of CRISPR & SPiF editing (types and frequency of mutations introduced) on targeted genes using sequencing and ICE software. Making CRISPR editing more efficient will lower the costs generated by iterative trial and error in cell engineering and make this technology accessible to those with the greatest need.