Date of Award


Document Type

Union College Only

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science



Second Department


First Advisor

J. Stephen Horton


The overall goal of this project was to develop CRISPR-Cas9 technology for gene editing purposes in two different species of mushroom-producing fungi. Specifically, we initially wanted to use CRISPR to shed light on the function of two genes thought to be involved in mushroom production and sexual development in these fungi. After considerable effort, we could not demonstrate bona fide CRISPR activity disrupting either of our two initial fungal gene targets. A recent study has found that the insertion of a short non-coding intron sequence within the transcribed region of Cas9allowed for robust expression of the protein product of this bacterial gene in the fungal genome. With this in mind, we re-engineered our Cas9 expression construct for use in new gene editing studies in a more user-friendly fungus to demonstrate CRISPR proof-of principle. The gene Ura1 encodes an essential enzyme in an important biosynthetic pathway in fungi. Ura1 was selected as a CRISPR gene target in these new studies, as disruptants of this gene are easy to identify by screening with the chemical 5-FOA. The anticipated results of these in-progress experiments are discussed in this thesis.



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In Copyright - Educational Use Permitted.