UMass Chan Medical School Faculty Publications

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Pharmacology; RNA Therapeutics Institute

Publication Date


Document Type



Biochemistry, Biophysics, and Structural Biology | Cell Biology | Computational Biology | Genetics and Genomics


The bacterial CRISPR-Cas9 system has been repurposed for genome engineering, transcription modulation, and chromosome imaging in eukaryotic cells. However, the nuclear dynamics of clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)-associated protein 9 (Cas9) guide RNAs and target interrogation are not well defined in living cells. Here, we deployed a dual-color CRISPR system to directly measure the stability of both Cas9 and guide RNA. We found that Cas9 is essential for guide RNA stability and that the nuclear Cas9-guide RNA complex levels limit the targeting efficiency. Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching measurements revealed that single mismatches in the guide RNA seed sequence reduce the target residence time from >3 h to as low as time.


DNA Biology, Genetics, RNA Biology

Rights and Permissions

© 2016 Ma et al. This article is distributed under the terms of an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike–No Mirror Sites license for the first six months after the publication date (see After six months it is available under a Creative Commons License (Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported license, as described at

DOI of Published Version



J Cell Biol. 2016 Aug 29;214(5):529-37. Epub 2016 Aug 22. Link to article on publisher's site

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

Journal/Book/Conference Title

The Journal of cell biology

PubMed ID


Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.