Genetically engineering the nervous system with CRISPR-cas

Alfredo Sandoval, Hajira Elahi, Jonathan E. Ploski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


The multitude of neuronal subtypes and extensive interconnectivity of the mammalian brain presents a substantial challenge to those seeking to decipher its functions. While the molecular mechanisms of several neuronal functions remain poorly characterized, advances in next-generation sequencing (NGS) and gene-editing technology have begun to close this gap. The clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)-associated protein (CRISPR-Cas) system has emerged as a powerful genetic tool capable of manip-ulating the genome of essentially any organism and cell type. This technology has advanced our understanding of complex neurologic diseases by enabling the rapid generation of novel, disease-relevant in vitro and transgenic animal models. In this review, we discuss recent developments in the rapidly accelerating field of CRISPR-mediated genome engineering. We begin with an overview of the canonical function of the CRISPR platform, followed by a functional review of its many adaptations, with an emphasis on its applications for genetic interrogation of the normal and diseased nervous system. Additionally, we discuss limitations of the CRISPR editing system and suggest how future modifications to existing platforms may advance our understanding of the brain.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberENEURO.0419-19.2020
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Neuroscience


Dive into the research topics of 'Genetically engineering the nervous system with CRISPR-cas'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this