Abstract

 

The ability to read, write, and edit genomic information in living organisms can have a profound effect on research, health, economic, and environmental issues. The CRISPR/Cas system, recently discovered as an adaptive immune system in prokaryotes, has revolutionized the ease and throughput of genome editing in mammalian cells and has proved itself indispensable to the engineering of immune cells and identification of novel immune mechanisms. In this review, we summarize the CRISPR/Cas9 system and the history of its discovery and optimization. We then focus on engineering T cells and other types of immune cells, with emphasis on therapeutic applications. Last, we describe the different modifications of Cas9 and their recent applications in the genome-wide screening of immune cells.