THE QIMRON LAB

Basic studies of CRISPR-Cas and bacteriophages for controlling the bacterial-antibiotic resistance threat

Our lab studies the adaptive immune system of bacteria: the CRISPR-Cas. This fascinating system specifically adapts to defend prokaryotes against newly encountered phages by launching a specific RNA-guided attack against their nucleic acids. We also study novel phage interactions with their bacterial hosts, and particularly interactions with defense systems such as CRISPR-Cas. These basic studies are translated to projects aiming at reversing antibiotic resistance and consequently countering the threat from antibiotic-resistant pathogens.

 

PUBLICATIONS

CRYSTAL-CLEAR MEMORIES OF A BACTERIUM

Globus R., Qimron U. | Science. 2017 Sep 15;357(6356):1096-1097

EXTENDING THE HOST RANGE OF BACTERIOPHAGE PARTICLES FOR DNA TRANSDUCTION

Yosef I., Goren M.G., Globus R., Molshanski-Mor S., Qimron U. | Mol Cell. 2017 Jun 1;66(5):721-728.e3. | Cover page – Molecular Cell June 1st 2017

SENSITIZING PATHOGENS TO ANTIBIOTICS USING THE CRISPR-CAS SYSTEM

Goren M., Yosef I., Qimron U. | Drug Resist Updat. 2017 Jan;30:1-6

REPEAT SIZE DETERMINATION BY TWO MOLECULAR RULERS IN THE TYPE I-E CRISPR ARRAY

Goren M.G., Doron S., Globus R., Amitai G., Sorek R., Qimron U. | Cell Rep. 2016 Sep 13;16(11):2811-2818

NATURAL SELECTION UNDERLIES APPARENT STRESS-INDUCED MUTAGENESIS IN A BACTERIOPHAGE INFECTION MODEL

Yosef I., Edgar R., Levy A., Amitai G., Sorek R., Munitz A., Qimron U. | Nat Microbiol. 2016 Apr 18;1(6):16047

SPACER ADAPTATION BIASES EXPLAIN PREFERENCE FOR FOREIGN DNA IN CRISPR ADAPTATION

Levy A.*, Goren M.G.*, Yosef I., Auster O., Manor M., Amitai G., Edgar R., Qimron U.†, #, Sorek R.†, # *contributed equally; †joint supervision of work; #corresponding author | Nature, (article), 520(7548):505-510, 2015 | Highlighted in Nature Reviews Microbiology and in numerous press releases 

MICROBIOLOGY NEWS AND VIEWS: HOW BACTERIA GET SPACERS FROM INVADERS

Yosef I. and Qimron U. | Nature, 519(7542):166-167, 2015 

 

PROJECTS

THE CRISPR-CAS SYSTEM

The CRISPR-Cas system prevents phage growth by producing short RNA molecules that guide a cleavage complex to specific nucleic acids. We study the mechanisms and molecular players in this fascinating defense system. We are particularly interested in the adaptation step in which new short molecules that encode the guides are acquired.

BACTERIOPHAGES AS GENETIC TOOLS

Phages and their hosts co-evolved for billions of years. We explore novel phage interactions with their hosts to identify novel targets for drug design as well as provide novel inhibitors for such targets. We also use phages as the natural targets of the CRISPR-Cas system for elucidating mechanisms and developing new technologies. We further design phage particles able to package and deliver DNA molecules to an extended range of bacterial hosts, for targeting various pathogens.

REVERSING ANTIBIOTIC RESISTANCE OF PATHOGENS

We develop genetic constructs that eliminate the transfer of drug resistance genes between pathogens. Employment of counter-selection markers and the CRISPR-Cas system against genetic elements carrying drug resistance cassettes are designed for decreasing the spread of multi-drug resistant pathogens.

 

CONTACT US

 

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