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  1. Abstract

    Genome editing technologies introduce targeted chromosomal modifications in organisms yet are constrained by the inability to selectively modify repetitive genetic elements. Here we describe filtered editing, a genome editing method that embeds group 1 self-splicing introns into repetitive genetic elements to construct unique genetic addresses that can be selectively modified. We introduce intron-containing ribosomes into theE. coligenome and perform targeted modifications of these ribosomes using CRISPR/Cas9 and multiplex automated genome engineering. Self-splicing of introns post-transcription yields scarless RNA molecules, generating a complex library of targeted combinatorial variants. We use filtered editing to co-evolve the 16S rRNA to tune the ribosome’s translational efficiency and the 23S rRNA to isolate antibiotic-resistant ribosome variants without interfering with native translation. This work sets the stage to engineer mutant ribosomes that polymerize abiological monomers with diverse chemistries and expands the scope of genome engineering for precise editing and evolution of repetitive DNA sequences.

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  2. Abstract

    Biology utilizes multiple strategies, including sequestration in lipid vesicles, to raise the rate and specificity of chemical reactions through increases in effective molarity of reactants. We show that micelle-assisted reaction can facilitate native chemical ligations (NCLs) between a peptide-thioester – in which the thioester leaving group contains a lipid-like alkyl chain – and a Cys-peptide modified by a lipid-like moiety. Hydrophobic lipid modification of each peptide segment promotes the formation of mixed micelles, bringing the reacting peptides into close proximity and increasing the reaction rate. The approach enables the rapid synthesis of polypeptides using low concentrations of reactants without the need for thiol catalysts. After NCL, the lipid moiety is removed to yield an unmodified ligation product. This micelle-based methodology facilitates the generation of natural peptides, like Magainin 2, and the derivatization of the protein Ubiquitin. Formation of mixed micelles from lipid-modified reactants shows promise for accelerating chemical reactions in a traceless manner.

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