Friday, July 31, 2015

CRISPR, gene drives and safety

Two recent papers speak to CRISPR, gene drives and safety:

Akbari et al. 2015 Safeguarding gene drive experiments in the laboratory. in Early online in Policy Forum section of Science.  
 Abstract: "Multiple strategies are needed to ensure safe gene drive experiments."

Unckless et al. 2015 Modeling the Manipulation of Natural Populations by the Mutagenic Chain Reaction Early online at Genetics.
From the Discussion section:  "... there are conditions in which accidental introductions of a single individual can lead to fixation of the MCR allele ..."

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Beyond fruit flies--iBeetle large-scale RNAi screen in Tribolium

Schmitt-Engel C, Schultheis D, Schwirz J, Ströhlein N, Troelenberg N, Majumdar U, Dao VA, Grossmann D, Richter T, Tech M, Dönitz J, Gerischer L, Theis M, Schild I, Trauner J, Koniszewski ND, Küster E, Kittelmann S, Hu Y, Lehmann S, Siemanowski J, Ulrich J, Panfilio KA, Schröder R, Morgenstern B, Stanke M, Buchhholz F, Frasch M, Roth S, Wimmer EA, Schoppmeier M, Klingler M, Bucher G. The iBeetle large-scale RNAi screen reveals gene functions for insect development and physiology. Nat Commun. 2015 Jul 28;6:7822. PMID: 26215380.

From the abstract: "Genetic screens are powerful tools to identify the genes required for a given biological process. .. for technical reasons, comprehensive screens have been restricted to very few model organisms. ... although deep sequencing is revealing the genes of ever more insect species, the functional studies predominantly focus on candidate genes previously identified in Drosophila, which is biasing research towards conserved gene functions. RNAi screens in other organisms promise to reduce this bias. Here we present the results of the iBeetle screen, a large-scale, unbiased RNAi screen in the red flour beetle, Tribolium castaneum ... This work transcends the restrictions of the candidate gene approach and opens fields of research not accessible in Drosophila."

Don't miss: "New fields of research" section of the article, which describes studies, such as of the 'odiferous stink glands,' that can be done in Tribolium but not Drosophila.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Glia-specific RNAi screen explores circadian behavior

Ng FS, Jackson FR. The ROP vesicle release factor is required in adult Drosophila glia for normal circadian behavior. Front Cell Neurosci. 2015 Jul 3;9:256. PMID: 26190976.

Drosophila in vivo RNAi screen explores ovarian follicle cell differentiation

Jia D, Soylemez M, Calvin G, Bornmann R, Bryant J, Hanna C, Huang YC, Deng WM. A large-scale in vivo RNAi screen to identify genes involved in Notch-mediated follicle cell differentiation and cell cycle switches. Sci Rep. 2015 Jul 24;5:12328. PMID: 26205122.

Drosophila CRISPR library reported by Bassett et al

Bassett AR, Kong L, Liu JL. A Genome-Wide CRISPR Library for High-Throughput Genetic Screening in Drosophila Cells. J Genet Genomics. 2015 Jun 20;42(6):301-9. PMID: 26165496.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

DRSC publishes RBP library resource including 'baseline data' available lots of ways--including interactive!

The DRSC is pleased to announce our new cell-based RNAi library targeting RNA Binding Proteins and corresponding 'baseline' data set. These data should be a helpful reference for anyone analyzing data from screens of the same library with more sophisticated assays.  

Big thanks to all the folks who worked hard to make this possible!

Mohr, Hu, Rudd, Buckner, Gilly, Foster, Sierzputowska, Comjean, Ye and Perrimon (2015) Reagent and Data Resources for Investigation of RNA Binding Protein Functions in Drosophila melanogaster Cultured Cells. Early online at G3 July 2015.

At a DRSC webpage we summarize ways to view the data.

Just one example--when you view the total ATP readout data at you can hover to see gene and reagent identifiers, zoom in on sub-sections of the graph, etc. The data are also available at the DRSC, at NCBI PubChem and no doubt will be imported by the folks at GenomeRNAi.

New report on TALEN gene editing in flies