New tools for transgene excision, using Cas9 cleavage to target the T-DNA termini
Research project 21
Project researcher: Amir Sherman

Genome-edited plants are considered non-GMO (Genetically modified) as long as they do not contain foreign DNA. This could be achieved by using technologies that are DNA integration-free such as RNP or transient expression or by using standard DNA transformation and crossing out the transgene which creates a plant with the trait of interest that is GMO-free.

These options are not relevant to all plants as in some of them the system for DNA-free delivery does not exist and their transformation system is agrobacterium based that creating an edited plant that is transgenic.  crossing the transgenic cassette out can change the variety of interest in some cases. Examples of such crops are different fruit trees and other plants that are not homozygous.

To bypass this hurdle we are developing a system that is based on the ability of CRISPR CAS to cut DNA with a specific gRNA design that will allow self excision of the transgenic cassette and create a plant that is genome-edited and GMO-free. If we succeed it will open the way for many genome-edited plant products.

Project researcher:

עמיר שרמן

Amir Sherman
Project researcher

Plant Sciences, Agricultural Research Organization, Volcani Institute.


Phone: +972-3-9683040

Website: Amir Sherman

Research areas:

  • Utilization of genomic technologies for plant breeding.
  • Comparative genomics in fungi.
  • Integration of genomic technologies into agriculture.

Research partner:

ד"ר מריה ארווי

Dr. Maria Arroyave
Postdoctoral researcher

Plant Sciences, Agricultural Research Organization, Volcani Institute.