Nowadays, it is well known that archaea organisms as well as bacteria show an important range of defense mechanisms. Among others, a unique molecular system called CRISPR/Cas (clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats) helps provide protection (adaptive guided immunity) athwart foreign nucleic acids, including plasmids and viral infections. As a typical immune response, CRISPR system is based on the acquisition of genetic records provided by infectious external agents, and in this sense, a high interference upon a new infection is unchained. In relation to plant research, less than 10 years ago, efforts to understand this peculiar mechanism and the possibility of being used in biotechnological processes have been focused on obtaining atavistic changes in different transformable vegetal specimens by inducing selective mutations into a reading frame that may be translated in a given moment (i.e., ORF; open reading frame). In light of the consideration that one common use of ORFs is to assist gene prediction processes, palindromic repeats are mostly based on the directed mutations via nonhomologous end joining. Although it is true that DNA-free editing techniques are now desirable for molecular crop breeding, CRISPR/Cas as a mutational regulatory system in plant biology may offer better complex genome rearrangements.
Part of the book: Transgenic Crops