CRISPR/Cas9 Technology in Restoring Dystrophin Expression in iPSC-Derived Muscle Progenitors.J Vis Exp. 2019 09 14JV
Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a severe progressive muscle disease caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene, which ultimately leads to the exhaustion of muscle progenitor cells. Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats/CRISPR-associated 9 (CRISPR/Cas9) gene editing has the potential to restore the expression of the dystrophin gene. Autologous induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs)-derived muscle progenitor cells (MPC) can replenish the stem/progenitor cell pool, repair damage, and prevent further complications in DMD without causing an immune response. In this study, we introduce a combination of CRISPR/Cas9 and non-integrated iPSC technologies to obtain muscle progenitors with recovered dystrophin protein expression. Briefly, we use a non-integrating Sendai vector to establish an iPSC line from dermal fibroblasts of Dmdmdx mice. We then use the CRISPR/Cas9 deletion strategy to restore dystrophin expression through a non-homologous end joining of the reframed dystrophin gene. After PCR validation of exon23 depletion in three colonies from 94 picked iPSC colonies, we differentiate iPSC into MPC by doxycycline (Dox)-induced expression of MyoD, a key transcription factor playing a significant role in regulating muscle differentiation. Our results show the feasibility of using CRISPR/Cas9 deletion strategy to restore dystrophin expression in iPSC-derived MPC, which has significant potential for developing future therapies for the treatment of DMD.