The Bradley group at the Sanger Institute implement innovative genetic and genomic approaches to tackle scientific questions which can be basic or translational. Illustrative examples below are intended as a framework for discussion and elaboration.
- Using CRISPR/cas9 to identify key genetic determinants of mammalian cells. Genetic screens are recognized as one of the most powerful means to identify genetic determinants in biological processes. The development of genome wide CRISPR/cas9 libraries in mice and humans offer a major advance because of the efficiency with which mutations can be generated and the wide applicability of the technology. One area of interest is the modulation of viral diseases. Opportunities exist to control viral infections by interfering with host gene products, preliminary data with influenza is very promising. A project would be tailored to identify host gene products that are relevant to human and/or agricultural species. The efficiency of the Cas9/CRISPR system also opens the possibility of multiplexing mutations to uncover gene-gene combinations that can be explored in applied therapeutic or basic science contexts.
- Building a platform to generate therapeutic antibodies for animal use Over the last few years technology has been developed to humanize large loci in mice. One effort has been directed towards the generation of mice in which 2.7 million bases of human DNA has been inserted in the immunoglobulin loci. Antibodies isolated from these mice are being developed as human therapeutics. The modularity of the technology and the building blocks allow this concept to be adapted to develop antibodies with therapeutic utility in other species.
The Bradley lab publication list can be found here: http://scholar.google.co.uk/citations?user=YxlRqz4AAAAJ&hl=en