Introduction to Genome Editing
Synthetic biology remolds the existing organisms to generate new features or create artificial lives. New genes, pathways, modules or even whole genomes need to be designed and synthesized. Therefore, enabling technologies, such as gene synthesis, DNA assembly, and genome editing, play a critical in the development of synthetic biology.
Genome editing is a powerful technology to make changes to specific genomic loci, which requires an in-depth understanding of the complex genetic functions of complete genome sequences. It can be used to precisely manipulate genome sequences to meet the design requirements of new biological systems. A variety of multifunctional engineered nucleases with programmable DNA-binding domains have been developed to further improve our ability to make precise changes in the genomes. Furthermore, the rapid development of genome editing technology may shift to synthetic genomics. However, the specificity, efficiency and safety of genome editing must be improved in the future.
Figure 1. Examples of programmable genome editing tools. (Guha T K, et al., 2017)