Cell Rep Methods. 2023 Dec 5:100672. doi: 10.1016/j.crmeth.2023.100672. Online ahead of print.
New technologies and large-cohort studies have enabled novel variant discovery and association at unprecedented scale, yet functional characterization of these variants remains paramount to deciphering disease mechanisms. Approaches that facilitate parallelized genome editing of cells of interest or induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) have become critical tools toward this goal. Here, we developed an approach that incorporates libraries of CRISPR-Cas9 guide RNAs (gRNAs) together with inducible Cas9 into a piggyBac (PB) transposon system to engineer dozens to hundreds of genomic variants in parallel against isogenic cellular backgrounds. This method empowers loss-of-function (LoF) studies through the introduction of insertions or deletions (indels) and copy-number variants (CNVs), though generating specific nucleotide changes is possible with prime editing. The ability to rapidly establish high-quality mutational models at scale will facilitate the development of isogenic cellular collections and catalyze comparative functional genomic studies investigating the roles of hundreds of genes and mutations in development and disease.