Reversible regulation of polyubiquitin gene UBC via modified inducible CRISPR/cas9 system

Seung Woo Han, Byung Kwon Jung, So Hyun Park, Kwon Yul Ryu

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4 Scopus citations


Ubiquitin is required under both normal and stress conditions. Under stress conditions, upregulation of the polyubiquitin gene UBC is essential to meet the requirement of increased ubiquitin levels to confer stress resistance. However, UBC upregulation is usually observed only under stress conditions and not under normal conditions. Therefore, it has not been possible to upregulate UBC under normal conditions to study the effect of excess ubiquitin on cellular machinery. Recently, the CRISPR/Cas9 system has been widely used in biological research as a useful tool to study gene disruption effects. In this study, using an inducible CRISPR/Cas9 variant, a dCas9–VP64 fusion protein, combined with a single guide RNA (sgRNA) containing MS2 aptamer loops and MS2-p65-HSF1, we developed a system to increase the ubiquitin pool via upregulation of UBC. Although it is challenging to upregulate the expression of a gene that is already expressed at high levels, the significance of our system is that UBC upregulation can be induced in an efficient, reversible manner that is compatible with cellular processes, even under normal conditions. This system can be used to study ubiquitin pool dynamics and it will be a useful tool in identifying the role of ubiquitin under normal and stress conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3168
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
Issue number13
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2019


  • DCas9
  • Polyubiquitin gene
  • Stress
  • Ubiquitin
  • Upregulation


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