Rajalaxmi Natarajan, Ph.D.
September 6, 2017
A recent study
published in Bioinformatics describes a new secure,
web-based, user-friendly, data analysis platform to mine useful
information from complex sequencing experiments. This revolutionary
tool, CRISPRcloud, was
developed by researchers at the
Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute
Texas Children's Hospital led by principal investigators
and Baylor faculty, Drs.
Zhandong Liu and Huda
In this study, Hyun-Hwan Jeong, a postdoctoral fellow in the Liu
Lab developed CRISPRcloud, a bioinformatics
platform that extracts and analyzes complex CRISPR sequencing data,
which are then displayed in a user-friendly graphical
CRISPR (clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic
repeats) is a cutting-edge editing tool in biology that has been
used to add or remove specific genes from plant and animal genomes.
It is a part of bacteria's natural defense system to protect
against viral infections but in recent years, scientists have
leveraged it to artificially edit specific genes in the
In the last decade decreasing costs and time associated with
complex CRISPR sequencing projects has allowed labs all over the
world to use it on a routine basis. This has generated a huge
amount of complex, unannotated CRISPR sequencing data. However,
decoding and extracting useful information from this mountain of
data in a timely fashion is a huge roadblock for biomedical
investigators with little-or-no bioinformatics expertise.
CRISPRcloud solves the issue of CRISPR sequencing-to-data time
lag and helps speed up biomedical discoveries. In addition,
researchers can also use this tool to collate information about
their favorite gene(s) from other external databases such
as CRISPRtools, GenomeCRISPR, MARRVEL.