A CRISPR-Cpf1 system for efficient genome editing and transcriptional repression in plants

Xu Tang, Levi G. Lowder, Tao Zhang, Aimee A. Malzahn, Xuelian Zheng, Daniel F Voytas, Zhaohui Zhong, Yiyi Chen, Qiurong Ren, Qian Li, Elida R. Kirkland, Yong Zhang, Yiping Qi

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233 Scopus citations


Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)-Cpf1 has emerged as an effective genome editing tool in animals. Here we compare the activity of Cpf1 from Acidaminococcus sp. BV3L6 (As) and Lachnospiraceae bacterium ND2006 (Lb) in plants, using a dual RNA polymerase II promoter expression system. LbCpf1 generated biallelic mutations at nearly 100% efficiency at four independent sites in rice T0 transgenic plants. Moreover, we repurposed AsCpf1 and LbCpf1 for efficient transcriptional repression in Arabidopsis, and demonstrated a more than tenfold reduction in miR159b transcription. Our data suggest promising applications of CRISPR-Cpf1 for editing plant genomes and modulating the plant transcriptome.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number17018
JournalNature plants
StatePublished - Feb 17 2017

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by grants including the National Science Foundation of China (31330017, 31271420 and 31371682) and the National Transgenic Major Project (2014ZX0801003B-002) to X.Z. and Y.Z., a Collaborative Funding Grant from North Carolina Biotechnology Center and Syngenta Biotechnology (2016-CFG-8003) and a startup fund from University of Maryland-College Park to Y.Q., and National Science Foundation (MCB 0209818, DBI 0923827 and 105-1339209) to D.F.V.


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