Programmable Genome Editing Tools and their Regulation for Efficient Genome Engineering
The utility of genome editing technologies for disease modeling and developing cellular therapies has been extensively documented, but the impact of these technologies on mutational load at the whole-genome level remains unclear. We performed whole-genome sequencing to evaluate the mutational load at single-base resolution in individual gene-corrected human induced pluripotent stem cell (hiPSC) clones in three different disease models. In single-cell clones, gene correction by helper-dependent adenoviral vector (HDAdV) or Transcription Activator-Like Effector Nuclease (TALEN) exhibited few off-target effects and a low level of sequence variation, comparable to that accumulated in routine hiPSC culture. The sequence variants were randomly distributed and unique to individual clones. We also combined both technologies and developed a TALEN-HDAdV hybrid vector, which significantly increased gene-correction efficiency in hiPSCs. Therefore, with careful monitoring via whole-genome sequencing it is possible to apply genome editing to human pluripotent cells with minimal impact on genomic mutational load.