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Efficient generation of adenovirus vectors carrying the Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeat (CRISPR)-CRISPR associated proteins (Cas)12a system by suppressing Cas12a expression in packaging cells

Tsukamoto, Tomohito, Sakai, Eiko, Nishimae, Fumitaka, Sakurai, Fuminori, Mizuguchi, Hiroyuki
Journal of biotechnology 2019 v.304 pp. 1-9
Adenoviridae, gene editing, gene expression, gene transfer, human cell lines, proteins
Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeat (CRISPR)-CRISPR associated proteins (Cas) 9 system is a powerful tool for genome editing and still being aggressively improved. Cas12a, a recently discovered Cas9 ortholog, is expected to become complementary to Cas9 due to its unique characteristics. Previously we attempted to establish an adenovirus (Ad) vector-mediated delivery of CRISPR-Cas12a system since Ad vector is widely used for gene transfer in basic researches and medical applications. However, we found difficulties preparing of Ad vectors at an adequate titer. In this study, we have developed Ad vectors that conditionally express Cas12a either by a tetracycline-controlled promoter or a hepatocyte specific promoter to avoid putative inhibitory effects of Cas12a. These vectors successfully proliferated in packaging cells, HEK293 cells, and were recovered at high titers. We have also developed packaging cells that express shRNA for Cas12a to suppress expression of Cas12a. Using the cells, the Ad vector directing constitutive expression of Cas12a proliferated efficiently and was successfully recovered at a high titer. Overall, we improved recovery of Ad vectors carrying CRISPR-Cas12a system, thus provided them as a tool in genome editing researches.