A Simplified Method to Engineer CRISPR/Cas9-Mediated Geminivirus Resistance in Plants

Zahir Ali, Syed Shan-e-Ali Zaidi, Manal Tashkandi, Magdy M. Mahfouz

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

3 Scopus citations


Throughout the world, geminiviruses cause devastating losses in economically important crops, including tomato, cotton, cassava, potato, chili, and cucumber; however, control mechanisms such as genetic resistance remain expensive and ineffective. CRISPR/Cas9 is an adaptive immunity mechanism used by prokaryotes to defend against invading nucleic acids of phages and plasmids. The CRISPR/Cas9 system has been harnessed for targeted genome editing in a variety of eukaryotic species, and in plants, CRISPR/Cas9 has been used to modify or introduce many traits, including virus resistance. Recently, we demonstrated that the CRISPR/Cas9 system could be used to engineer plant immunity against geminiviruses by directly targeting the viral genome for degradation. In this chapter, we describe a detailed method for engineering CRISPR/Cas9-mediated resistance against geminiviruses. This method may provide broad, durable viral resistance, as it can target conserved regions of the viral genome and can also be customized to emerging viral variants. Moreover, this method can be used in many crop species, as it requires little or no knowledge of the host plant’s genome.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationMethods in Molecular Biology
PublisherSpringer New York
Number of pages17
ISBN (Print)9781493996346
StatePublished - Jun 22 2019

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01
Acknowledged KAUST grant number(s): OSR-2015-CRG4-2647
Acknowledgements: We would like to thank members of the laboratory for genome engineering for continuous discussions. This study is supported by King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) Office of Sponsored Research (OSR) under Award No. OSR-2015-CRG4-2647.


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