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Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol. 2013 Jan;14(1):49-55. doi: 10.1038/nrm3486. Epub 2012 Nov 21.

TALENs: a widely applicable technology for targeted genome editing.

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  • 1Massachusetts General Hospital, Molecular Pathology Unit, the Center for Computational and Integrative Biology, and the Center for Cancer Research, Harvard Medical School, Department of Pathology, 149 13th Street, 6th floor, Charlestown, Massachusetts 02129, USA. jjoung@partners.org


Engineered nucleases enable the targeted alteration of nearly any gene in a wide range of cell types and organisms. The newly-developed transcription activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs) comprise a nonspecific DNA-cleaving nuclease fused to a DNA-binding domain that can be easily engineered so that TALENs can target essentially any sequence. The capability to quickly and efficiently alter genes using TALENs promises to have profound impacts on biological research and to yield potential therapeutic strategies for genetic diseases.

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