Simultaneous paralogue knockout using a CRISPR-concatemer in mouse small intestinal organoids

Amanda Andersson-Rolf, Alessandra Merenda, Roxana C. Mustata, Taibo Li, Sabine Dietmann, Bon Kyoung Koo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Approaches based on genetic modification have been invaluable for investigating a wide array of biological processes, with gain- and loss-of-function approaches frequently used to investigate gene function. However, the presence of paralogues, and hence possible genetic compensation, for many genes necessitates the knockout (KO) of all paralogous genes in order to observe clear phenotypic change. CRISPR technology, the most recently described tool for gene editing, can generate KOs with unprecedented ease and speed and has been used in adult stem cell-derived organoids for single gene knockout, gene knock-in and gene correction. However, the simultaneous targeting of multiple genes in organoids by CRISPR technology has not previously been described. Here we describe a rapid, scalable and cost effective method for generating double knockouts in organoids. By concatemerizing multiple gRNA expression cassettes, we generated a ‘gRNA concatemer vector’. Our method allows the rapid assembly of annealed synthetic DNA oligos into the final vector in a single step. This approach facilitates simultaneous delivery of multiple gRNAs to allow up to 4 gene KO in one step, or potentially to increase the efficiency of gene knockout by providing multiple gRNAs targeting one gene. As a proof of concept, we knocked out negative regulators of the Wnt pathway in small intestinal organoids, thereby removing their growth dependence on the exogenous Wnt enhancer, R-spondin1.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)271-277
Number of pages7
JournalDevelopmental Biology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 15 2016


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