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POSTERS: Biotechnology and genetic engineering

Improvement of CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing efficacy in citrus
Tirtha Lamichhane - Citrus Research and Education Center, University of Florida. Nian Wang- Citrus Research and Education Center, University of Florida

Citrus is one of the top fruit crops in the world. Citrus breeding is critical to improve fruit quality and to overcome the disease challenges such as Huanglongbing. However, conventional citrus breeding is difficult, inefficient and time-consuming because of long juvenile period, heterozygosity, sexual incompatibility and polyembryony in citrus. CRISPR/Cas9 mediated genome editing is a promising tool with great potentials. CRISPR/Cas9 mediated genome editing has been successfully used to modify citrus genome. However, the efficacy of CRISPR/Cas9 mediated genome editing of citrus needs to be improved. In previous study, Arabidopsis U6 and 35S promoters have been used to drive the expression of sgRNA. Here, we identified the U6 promoters in citrus and tested their efficacies in CRISPR/Cas9 mediated genome editing in citrus compared with the heterogenous U6 promoter (AtU6). Our results showed that the endogenous promoter has higher genome editing efficiency in citrus.