The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2020 Goes to Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer A. Doudna - ACS Axial
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The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2020 Goes to Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer A. Doudna

Emmanuelle Charpentier   Image by Bianca Fioretti, Hallbauer & Fioretti, copyright owned by Emmanuelle Charpentier who made it a Creative commons picture, CC BY-SA 4.0Jennifer A. Doudna,                 Image by Duncan.Hull – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

This year’s Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded to Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer A. Doudna for their development of the CRISPR/Cas9 method for genome editing.

As C&EN notes, “CRISPR has been a boon for biologists who use the molecular scissors to probe the code of life in fundamental science experiments. But researchers have wasted no time in applying the tool to agriculture and human health. Several groups are using CRISPR to change the DNA of livestock and crops. Others are using CRISPR as the basis of one-time therapies that could potentially offer cures to genetic diseases like sickle cell disease and muscular dystrophy. CRISPR has even been used to make simple diagnostic tests during the coronavirus pandemic.”

“Today’s Nobel Prize in Chemistry recognizes CRISPR-Cas9, a super-selective and precise gene-editing tool where chemistry plays an incredibly important role,” said ACS President Luis Echegoyen. “This discovery, originally derived from a natural defense mechanism in bacteria against viruses, will have untold applications in treating and curing genetic diseases and fighting cancer, as well as impacts on agricultural and other areas. The future for this technique is indeed bright and promising.”

Emmanuelle Charpentier is the Founding, Scientific and Managing Director of the Max Planck Unit for the Science of Pathogens in Berlin.

Jennifer A. Doudna is the Li Ka Shing Chancellor’s Professor of Biomedical Science, Chair of the Chancellor’s Advisor Committee on Biology and the Executive Director of the Innovative Genomics Initiative at the University of California, Berkeley. She is also an Investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. She is a former Associate Editor of ACS Chemical Biology and a current member of the journal’s Editorial Advisory Board.

“We congratulate Jennifer Doudna and Emmanuelle Charpentier on their groundbreaking Nobel Prize. The powerful gene-editing tools that resulted from their studies of the CRISPR/Cas9 bacterial defense system emerged from their application of chemical and mechanistic logic. The CRISPR-based tools are modular—a fundamental principle rooted in chemical biology,” said ACS Chemical Biology Editor-in-Chief Laura L Kiessling.

This year marks the first time the prize has been jointly awarded to two women. Charpentier and Doudna are just the sixth and seventh women to ever receive the prize.

“This Nobel Prize being awarded to two women has not escaped the notice of aspiring young female scientists. I have first-hand evidence as my daughter sent me an excited text this morning,” Kiessling added.

Read a C&EN feature on a day in the life of Jennifer Doudna.

Read C&EN’s coverage of the prize.

Read a conversation between ACS Chemical Biology Editor-in-Chief Laura Kiessling and Jennifer A. Doudna as they reflect on CRISPR, the field of chemical biology, and their experiences working in science.

The following research articles by Jennifer Doudna were published in ACS Central Science. Like all articles in that journal, they are published Open Access:

Site-Specific Bioconjugation through Enzyme-Catalyzed Tyrosine–Cysteine Bond Formation
Marco J. Lobba, Christof Fellmann, Alan M. Marmelstein, Johnathan C. Maza, Elijah N. Kissman, Stephanie A. Robinson, Brett T. Staahl, Cole Urnes, Rachel J. Lew, Casey S. Mogilevsky, Jennifer A. Doudna, and Matthew B. Francis
ACS Cent. Sci. 2020, 6, 9, 1564–1571
DOI: 10.1021/acscentsci.0c00940
***
Deciphering Off-Target Effects in CRISPR-Cas9 through Accelerated Molecular Dynamics
Clarisse G. Ricci, Janice S. Chen, Yinglong Miao, Martin Jinek, Jennifer A. Doudna, J. Andrew McCammon, and Giulia Palermo
ACS Cent. Sci. 2019, 5, 4, 651–662
DOI: acscentsci.9b00020

In honor of this year’s Nobel Prize in Chemistry winners, the following articles by Jennifer A. Doudna are being made free-to-read for 30 days (starting October 7, 2020) courtesy of ACS Publications:

Receptor-Mediated Delivery of CRISPR-Cas9 Endonuclease for Cell-Type-Specific Gene Editing
Romain Rouet, Benjamin A. Thuma, Marc D. Roy, Nathanael G. Lintner, David M. Rubitski, James E. Finley, Hanna M. Wisniewska, Rima Mendonsa, Ariana Hirsh, Lorena de Oñate, Joan Compte Barrón, Thomas J. McLellan, Justin Bellenger, Xidong Feng, Alison Varghese, Boris A. Chrunyk, Kris Borzilleri, Kevin D. Hesp, Kaihong Zhou, Nannan Ma, Meihua Tu, Robert Dullea, Kim F. McClure, Ross C. Wilson, Spiros Liras, Vincent Mascitti, and Jennifer A. Doudna
J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2018, 140, 21, 6596–6603
DOI: 10.1021/jacs.8b01551
***
Chemical and Biophysical Modulation of Cas9 for Tunable Genome Engineering
James K. Nuñez, Lucas B. Harrington, and Jennifer A. Doudna
ACS Chem. Biol. 2016, 11, 3, 681–688
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.5b01019
***

In 2018, ACS Chemical Biology Published a Special Issue on the Chemical Biology of CRISPR, featuring interviews with both Jennifer A. Doudna and Emmanuelle Charpentier. In honor of this year’s Nobel Prize in Chemistry this entire issue is being made free-to-read for 30 days (starting October 7, 2020) courtesy of ACS Publications.

Chemical Biology of CRISPR

Special Issue on the Chemical Biology of CRISPR
Alyson G. WeidmannOrcid and Amit Choudhary
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 283–284
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.8b00134
***
Spotlight: A Conversation with Laura Kiessling and Jennifer Doudna
Laura L. Kiessling and Jennifer A. Doudna
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 290–295
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.8b00108
***
Frontiers in CRISPR
Alyson G. Weidmann
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 296–304
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.8b00135
***
Discovering the Genome-Wide Activity of CRISPR-Cas Nucleases
Shengdar Q. Tsai
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 305–308
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00847
***
Discovery of Oligonucleotide Signaling Mediated by CRISPR-Associated Polymerases Solves Two Puzzles but Leaves an Enigma
Eugene V. Koonin and Kira S. Makarova
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 309–312
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00713
***
The Future of Multiplexed Eukaryotic Genome Engineering
David B. Thompson, Soufiane Aboulhouda, Eriona Hysolli, Cory J. Smith, Stan Wang, Oscar Castanon, and George M. Church
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 313–325
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00842
***
Identifying Novel Enhancer Elements with CRISPR-Based Screens
Jason C. Klein, Wei Chen, Molly Gasperini, and Jay Shendure
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 326–332
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00778
***
Genome Editing: Insights from Chemical Biology to Support Safe and Transformative Therapeutic Applications
Renee D. Wegrzyn, Andrew H. Lee, Amy L. Jenkins, Colby D. Stoddard, and Anne E. Cheever
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 333–342
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00689
***
Gene Drive: Evolved and Synthetic
Austin Burt and Andrea Crisanti
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 343–346
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b01031
***
Diverse Class 2 CRISPR-Cas Effector Proteins for Genome Engineering Applications
Neena K. Pyzocha and Sidi Chen
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 347–356
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00800
***
Type II-C CRISPR-Cas9 Biology, Mechanism, and Application
Aamir Mir, Alireza Edraki, Jooyoung Lee, and Erik J. Sontheimer
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 357–365
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00855
***
CRISPR Approaches to Small Molecule Target Identification
Marco Jost and Jonathan S. Weissman
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 366–375
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00965
***
The Promise and Challenge of In Vivo Delivery for Genome Therapeutics
Ross C. Wilson and Luke A. Gilbert
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 376–382
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00680
***
Editing the Genome Without Double-Stranded DNA Breaks
Alexis C. Komor, Ahmed H. Badran, and David R. Liu
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 383–388
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00710
***
Modulating DNA Repair Pathways to Improve Precision Genome Engineering
Katherine S. Pawelczak, Navnath S. Gavande, Pamela S. VanderVere-Carozza, and John J. Turchi
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 389–396
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00777
***
Repair of a Site-Specific DNA Cleavage: Old-School Lessons for Cas9-Mediated Gene Editing
Danielle N. Gallagher and James E. Haber
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 397–405
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00760
***
CRISPRi and CRISPRa Screens in Mammalian Cells for Precision Biology and Medicine
Martin Kampmann
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 406–416
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00657
***
Protein Inhibitors of CRISPR-Cas9
Joseph Bondy-Denomy
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 417–423
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00831
***
Can CRISPR-Based Gene Drive Be Confined in the Wild? A Question for Molecular and Population Biology
John M. Marshall and Omar S. Akbari
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 424–430
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00923
***
Multidimensional Control of Cas9 by Evolved RNA Polymerase-Based Biosensors
Jinyue Pu, Kaitlin Kentala, and Bryan C. Dickinson
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 431–437
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00532
***
Rheostatic Control of Cas9-Mediated DNA Double Strand Break (DSB) Generation and Genome Editing
John C. Rose, Jason J. Stephany, Cindy T. Wei, Douglas M. Fowler, and Dustin J. Maly
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 438–442
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00652
***
A Single-Chain Photoswitchable CRISPR-Cas9 Architecture for Light-Inducible Gene Editing and Transcription
Xin X. Zhou, Xinzhi Zou, Hokyung K. Chung, Yuchen Gao, Yanxia Liu, Lei S. Qi, and Michael Z. Lin
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 443–448
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00603
***
Generation of Optogenetically Modified Adenovirus Vector for Spatiotemporally Controllable Gene Therapy
Kazuo Takayama and Hiroyuki Mizuguchi
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 449–454
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b01058
***
Chemical Control of a CRISPR-Cas9 Acetyltransferase
Jonathan H. Shrimp, Carissa Grose, Stephanie R. T. Widmeyer, Abigail L. Thorpe, Ajit Jadhav, and Jordan L. Meier
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 455–460
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00883
***
A Cleavage-Responsive Stem-Loop Hairpin for Assaying Guide RNA Activity
Tara R. deBoer, Noreen Wauford, Jing-Yi Chung, Miguel Salvador Torres Perez, and Niren Murthy
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 461–466
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00899
***
CRISPR-Mediated Tagging of Endogenous Proteins with a Luminescent Peptide
Marie K. Schwinn, Thomas Machleidt, Kris Zimmerman, Christopher T. Eggers, Andrew S. Dixon, Robin Hurst, Mary P. Hall, Lance P. Encell, Brock F. Binkowski, and Keith V. Wood
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 467–474
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00549
***
Two-Color 810 nm STED Nanoscopy of Living Cells with Endogenous SNAP-Tagged Fusion Proteins
Alexey N. Butkevich, Haisen Ta, Michael Ratz, Stefan Stoldt, Stefan Jakobs, Vladimir N. Belov, and Stefan W. Hell
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 475–480
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00616
***
Conformational Dynamics of DNA Binding and Cas3 Recruitment by the CRISPR RNA-Guided Cascade Complex
Paul B. G. van Erp, Angela Patterson, Ravi Kant, Luke Berry, Sarah M. Golden, Brittney L. Forsman, Joshua Carter, Ryan N. Jackson, Brian Bothner, and Blake Wiedenheft
ACS Chem. Biol. 2018, 13, 2, 481–490
DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.7b00649
***

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