DNA-level editing of microbial communities for understanding and control.
Microbial communities are major contributors to the uptake and release of greenhouse gasses and are critical regulators of human health; however, efforts to precisely engineer their constituents' DNA are nascent. Our laboratory at the University of California, Berkeley brings DNA-editing tools to microbiomes.
In the short term, this approach should provide understanding of the interactions and unstudied organisms within communities.
Over the longer term, community editing offers a precise means for controlling microbiomes that are instrumental to our health, agriculture, climate, and industry.