Free Webinar | CRISPR Screening and Target Discovery for COVID-19 Therapeutic Development

August 12, 2020 | 11:00 am-12:00 pm EDT

11:00 Chairperson’s Remarks

Kevin Holden, PhD, Head of Science, Synthego

11:05 A SARS-CoV-2 Protein Interaction Map Reveals Targets for Drug Repurposing

Nevan Krogan, PhD, Professor, Cellular Molecular Pharmacology, School of Medicine UCSF; QBI COVID-19 Research Group (QCRG)

Jacqueline Fabius, COO, Quantitative Biosciences Institute

Efforts to develop antiviral drugs versus COVID-19 or vaccines for its prevention have been hampered by limited knowledge of the molecular details of SARS-CoV-2 infection. This webinar will describe our efforts to address this challenge by expressing 26 of the 29 SARS-CoV-2 proteins in human cells and identifying the human proteins physically associated with each using affinity-purification mass spectrometry. Among 332 high-confidence SARS-CoV-2-human protein-protein interactions, we identified 66 druggable human proteins or host factors targeted by 69 compounds (29 FDA-approved drugs, 12 drugs in clinical trials, and 28 preclinical compounds). Within a subset of these, multiple viral assays identified two sets of pharmacological agents that displayed antiviral activity.

11:35 Utilizing CRISPR Genome Engineering Platforms for COVID Collaborations

Jared Carlson-Stevermer, PhD, Lead Scientist, Synthego

Limited knowledge of how SARS-CoV-2 interacts with cells in the body has slowed efforts in drug development and repurposing in response to the current pandemic. Using a map of 332 human-viral protein-protein interactions, we created CRISPR knockout cell pools in parallel of each corresponding gene for subsequent viral infection studies. From these pools ~40 gene products have shown significant antiviral effect for subsequent studies with drugs or combinatorial knockout screening.

11:45 Q&A

Speaker Biographies

Kevin Holden, PhD
Head of Science, Synthego

Kevin Holden is Head of Science at Synthego in Redwood City, California. He is a senior member of a research team responsible for integrating CRISPR genome engineering workflows into novel automation platforms. In addition, he oversees academic and industrial collaborations with key opinion leaders in the CRISPR community and leads interactions with the company’s scientific advisors. He has over 10 years of biotechnology experience that includes collaborative research in synthetic biology and genome engineering. Kevin earned his PhD in Microbiology with an emphasis in Biotechnology from The University of California, Davis.

Nevan Krogan, PhD
Professor, Cellular Molecular Pharmacology, School of Medicine UCSF; QBI COVID-19 Research Group (QCRG)

Nevan Krogan, PhD, is a molecular biologist, UC San Francisco professor, and director of the intensely interdisciplinary Quantitative Biosciences Institute (QBI) under the UCSF School of Pharmacy. He is also a senior investigator at the Gladstone Institutes. He led the work to create the SARS-CoV-2 interactome and assembled the QBI Coronavirus Research Group (QCRG), which includes hundreds of scientists from around the world. His research focuses on developing and using unbiased, quantitative systems approaches to study a wide variety of diseases with the ultimate goal of developing new therapeutics. Nevan serves as Director of The HARC Center, an NIH-funded collaborative group that focuses on the structural characterization of HIV-human protein complexes. Dr. Krogan is also the Co-Director of three Cell Mapping initiatives, the Cancer Cell Mapping Initiative (CCMI), the Host Pathogen Map Initiative (HPMI), and the Psychiatric Cell Map Initiative (PCMI). These initiatives map the gene and protein networks in healthy and diseased cells with these maps being used to better understand disease and provide novel therapies to fight them. He has authored over 250 papers in the fields of genetics and molecular biology and has given over 250 lectures and seminars around the world. He is a Searle Scholar, a Keck Distinguished Scholar, and was recently awarded the Roddenberry Prize for Biomedical Research.

Jacqueline Fabius, COO
Quantitative Biosciences Institute

Jacqueline Fabius obtained her undergraduate degree from Hamilton College in Comparative Literature and Spanish. She worked in media and management consulting for 11 years prior to joining the United Nations and later UCSF in the role of the Chief Operating Officer for the Quantitative Biosciences Institute, where she heads a number of initiatives including establishing relationships and collaborations as well as media and communication strategy for the institute. In alignment with QBI’s mission to bring young investigators and women scientists to the forefront at QBI, she started the Scholarship for Women from Developing Nations. Her focus is facilitating communication and networking across wide audiences ranging from scientists to lay audience.

Jared Carlson-Stevermer, PhD
Lead Scientist, Synthego

Jared is Lead Scientist in the R&D department at Synthego. There he works to develop new techniques and methods for high-throughput genome engineering in an automated fashion to enable array-based screening as well as develop new technologies to enable precise CRISPR-based edits. Jared received his PhD in Biomedical Engineering from University of Wisconsin-Madison where he focused on creating new CRISPR tools to correct complex genomic mutations.