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Cas4 nuclease protein structure

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This wreath represents the molecular structure of a protein, Cas4, which is part of a system, known as CRISPR, that bacteria use to protect themselves against viral invaders. The green ribbons show the protein's structure, and the red balls show the location of iron and sulfur molecules important for the protein's function. Scientists harnessed Cas9, a different protein in the bacterial CRISPR system, to create a gene-editing tool known as CRISPR-Cas9. Using this tool, researchers are able to study a range of cellular processes and human diseases more easily, cheaply and precisely. In December, 2015, Science magazine recognized the CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing tool as the "breakthrough of the year." Read more about Cas4 in the December 2015 Biomedical Beat post A Holiday-Themed Image Collection.


Fred Dyda, NIDDK

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molecular model by Fred Dyda, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, PDB entry number 4ic1


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This page last reviewed on January 4, 2017