Articles, announcements and insights from Horizon Discovery

Major study uses Horizon's HAP1 cell lines to screen thousands of BRCA1 mutations

Sep 20, 2018 1:20:58 PM 1 Comment

A major study has been undertaken to gain a better understanding of thousands of mutations in the BRCA1 gene – a key gene in breast and ovarian cancers. 

Published in Nature this month, the study by the Department of Genome Sciences at the University of Washington School of Medicine, set out to analyze nearly 4,000 variants  in 13 exons of BRCA1 that are “of unknown significance”. These are variants that are not currently known to cause cancer, but theoretically could. 

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How to... find your ideal cell line model

Sep 3, 2018 10:04:50 AM No Comments Comment

With over 25,000 individual Cell Lines in our new Express Catalog, we want to give you a helping hand with finding the ideal Cell Line Model for your research. 

Using our new downloadable catalog, you can now search, filter and browse through our online cell model offering. There are two main collections available in our catalog: 

  • Knockout Cell Models
  • Cancer-relevant Cell Lines

To help you find the right cell line for your research, here's some bite-size information on the data available to you... 

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5 ways to validate and extend your research with Knockout Cell Lines

Jun 14, 2018 4:17:56 PM No Comments Comment

CRISPR technology now allows genes and molecular pathways to be examined with greater definition. We look at how knockout cell lines, either together with gene rescue and replication of disease mutations or as an independent cell model, can be used to validate your research and extend your findings.

There is a significant challenge in translating the wealth of genetic information now available to the role of genes, to understand basic biology, as well as linking to the role of mutations for understanding disease pathogenesis.

Knockout (KO) cell lines are excellent model systems to do this. A key benefit of cell lines is the ability to use gene-editing to construct isogenic cell line pairs - where a mutant model can be interrogated alongside a wildtype control.

Here’s five great examples of how to get the most out of your research using KO Cell Lines:

  1. Validate your research tools
  2. Identify key players in a pathway
  3. Confirm pharmacological effects
  4. Lift the quality of your research with proper controls
  5. Connect patient relevant mutations to pathology

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Patient derived xenograft (PDX) use in cancer research

Apr 18, 2018 11:59:19 AM No Comments Comment

 

Due to obvious ethical considerations, cancer research conducted in humans is restricted to observational and analytical studies, with therapy focused clinical trials being the one exception to this rule. Preclinical mouse tumour models therefore provide a critical intermediate experimental model system tying together more basic in vitro research with studies in humans, thereby providing bench-to-bedside translational oncology research.

Read More PDX, Patient Derived Xenografts, Immunodeficient Mice, Oncology, in vivo

Turning The Lights On Inside Your Genetic Toolbox

Feb 20, 2018 3:06:58 PM No Comments Comment

Optogenetics, a neuromodulation method that is employed to control and monitor the activities of individual neurons in living tissue and was first developed by researchers Edward Boyden and Karl Deisseroth in 20051, is now considered as being one of the main pillars of neuroscience research.

In 2010, the journal Nature Methods choose optogenetics as the ‘Method of the Year’2 across all fields of science and engineering. In the same year the academic research journal Science highlighted it in the article ‘Breakthroughs of the Decade’3. The basis of this technique is to genetically modify neurons to express light-sensitive ion channels such as excitatory channelrhodopsin or inhibitory halorhodospin and then use light to control the on/off status of neuronal excitation. Great progress has been made with this technology since its invention and today even conscious free-moving animal models can be manipulated and observed in real-time.

Read More in vivo, Cre, Gene editing, knock-in rats, Cre-LoxP

Our Top 5 CRISPR Publications from 2017

Jan 9, 2018 11:45:10 AM No Comments Comment

Have you been overwhelmed by the number of CRISPR articles published in 2017? PubMed alone has cited over 3,000 CRISPR publications in 2017! We wanted to save you from having to sieve through the databases by asking our experts to select what they thought were the most important CRISPR publications from last year.

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A human gene knockout model system enables genotypic effects on phenotype be examined in large screens

Nov 16, 2017 10:52:06 AM No Comments Comment

For the first time, Human Knockout cell lines are readily available for scalable reverse genetic screening.

We speak to Horizon's Head of Innovation, Dr Tilmann Bürckstümmer about the application of  reverse genetic screening using a combination of new technologies.

Gapp et al. (2016) in Molecular Systems Biology

 

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New cell line models for studies of DNA Damage Repair: Interview with Prof. Minoru Takata

Sep 6, 2017 10:04:07 PM No Comments Comment

Revealing the role of E3 ubiquitin ligases in DNA damage repair

One of the diverse new uses for the HAP1 cell line, one that has begun to draw significant attention, is in the field of DNA damage repair. A recent paper from Minoru Takata’s group highlights this important application of this relatively new tool.

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Off-target editing with CRISPR/Cas9 : The evidence

Jun 23, 2017 10:16:36 AM No Comments Comment

What more do we know since last year?

As more and more papers are published using models generated by CRISPR/Cas9 editing, and new and exciting applications for the CRISPR/Cas system continue to be invented, the potential for off-target editing continues to be discussed. We published an article on our blog a year ago which explains the potential for off-target editing with CRISPR/Cas9 and summarised some of the literature on this topic, and thought this was a good time for an update.

 
Read More Gene editing

What Are Essential Genes?

Jun 13, 2017 3:03:58 PM No Comments Comment

Essential genes

...are defined as genes that are critical for the survival of an organism. These are considered to be genes that are absolutely required for the cell to grown, proliferate and survive. Deletion of an essential gene from a cell eventually leads to the death of this cell or a severe proliferation defect. As a consequence, it is impossible to generate cells with a knock-out or deletion of essential genes.

In a breakthrough study, Blomen et al. (Science, 2015) used extensive mutagenesis to describe the complete set of essential genes in the human HAP1 cell line

Mutations were generated by the random introduction of a gene-trap cassette that interferes with correct splicing.

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