The Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR) - RNA-guided Cas9 endonuclease system has provided a fast and efficient method for precise genome editing in diverse mammalian species, including humans. The CRISPR/Cas9 technology allows generation of modifications into site-specific locations of the selected genes in one major step by carrying deletions, insertions or DNA donor-directed precise sequence modifications. Cas9 forms a nucleoprotein complex with a sequence-specific guide RNA to create double-stranded breaks in complementary DNA target. Further, double-stranded break repair machinery leads to the intended gene modifications. The CRISPR/Cas9 system is widely used technique for genome modification, editing and other biotechnology applications, such as functional annotation, a system for visualization of specific genomic loci and transcriptional control of genes. CRISPR/Cas9-mediated manipulation of the laboratory animal genomes has contributed to the understanding of gene functions and has become a popular approach for modeling human disorders. Furthermore, the growing application of CRISPR-Cas9 system to human genes emerges as an extremely powerful technology for the molecular characterization and treatment of human disease. In this review we present the essential principles of CRISPR/ Cas9 technology and the recent advances in its use in translational biomedicine.
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