Emanuelle Charpentier

Charpentier Emanuelle 250


Prof Charpentier is a world-leader in the fast-growing field of CRISPR-Cas biology and application. She discovered the mechanism of the RNA programmable Cas9 endonuclease and small RNA biogenesis in type II CRISPR-Cas systems. She demonstrated the diversity and co-evolution of dual RNA-Cas9 in bacteria which expanded the Cas9 genome engineering toolbox. A versatile microbiologist, she has had an impact in the fields of virulence factor regulation and antibiotic resistance of Gram+ bacteria.


Emmanuelle Charpentier is considered one of Europe’s most visible microbiologists and is well recognized for her pioneering work on the CRISPR-Cas9 system. She characterized the basic microbiology that defines CRISPR-Cas9 mechanism of action and realized that this system could be applied to genome editing in bacteria and more recently, in eukaryotes. This has revolutionized creation of genomically altered animal models and even possible therapeutic interventions in human disease. It is arguably the most game-changing discovery of the past decade and will continue to advance microbiology and medicine in tandem. Prof Charpentier’s career has focused on Gram positive bacteria and mechanisms of genetic exchange and the impact of genomic variability on virulence and antibiotic susceptibility. Her work opened the possibility of transient bacterial phenotypes that she later explained mechanistically by a detailed approach to regulation by sRNAs. These seminal studies
provided the critical depth of understanding that was required to recognize the physiological significance, biochemical mechanism and novelty of CRISPR-Cas9. Professor Charpentier trained at the Pasteur Institute and Rockefeller University and has led laboratories in US, Austria and Sweden before her current prestigious position as an A.V. Humboldt professor and department head at the Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research in Germany. She is a member of several international academies and is a Leading Global Thinker. CRISPR-Cas9 is a topic at nearly every international basic or medical meeting and she is founder of CRISPR Therapeutics (2014).



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