An ancient bacterial immune system that protects microbes from viral infections.
CRISPR systems capture genetic fragments of prior infections and use these memories to direct Cas proteins to fight against subsequent infections.
CRISPR-Cas has revolutionized genome editing and is now doing the same for molecular detection.
We Repurpose CRISPR for Detection
Our platform makes use of three unique CRISPR proteins.
The first, Cas12, binds to and cuts DNA, the genetic material of all living things on Earth. The second, Cas14, binds to and cuts DNA but is much smaller than Cas12.
The third, Cas13, recognizes and cuts a related molecule called RNA. Together, these three proteins enable us to sense virtually any type of nucleic acid.
CRISPR is Programmable
The Cas proteins are programmed by a molecule called a guide RNA. This guide molecule matches up with the sequence we want to detect. Then, the Cas protein senses the match.
Reprogramming these complexes is as simple as changing the sequence of the guide RNA.
Reading the Result
In addition to the protein and guide RNA components, a reporter molecule is also required.
Once the Cas protein finds its matching target, the protein breaks apart the reporter molecule. The reporter molecule then changes color. This signal indicates the presence of a specific DNA or RNA sequence.
Rapid, affordable, and easy-to-use nucleic acid detection is needed in the hospital, at point-of-care, and at-home.
Traditional methods for detection can be time-consuming, expensive, and labor-intensive. Additionally, development is often limited to a specific set of applications.
The Mammoth Solution
The rapidly programmable nature of RNA-guided CRISPR proteins enables our technology to detect anything with a DNA or RNA component.
Because of its flexibility, CRISPR-based detection can be used across many industries, such as healthcare, agriculture, environmental monitoring, and more. The technology itself is rapid, affordable, and simple.
Everything Works Together
The Cas proteins can work together to simultaneously detect both DNA and RNA. This combinatorial detection provides unique insights into the status of a cell.
In healthcare applications, such information enables patients and physicians to make accurate treatment decisions.
Ready for Action:
Healthcare Early cancer detection, non-invasive prenatal testing, infectious disease detection, genotyping
Agriculture Identification of soil microbiome content, plant and animal pathogens, crop genotyping
Food Security Bacterial and viral contamination, species identification
Environmental Monitoring Detection of specific organisms in environmental samples and rapid response to emerging diseases
...and even Bioterrorism Detection of harmful biological agents and forensic genotyping