Sunny Ahmar,1,6 Babar Usman,2,6 Goetz Hensel,3,4 Ki-Hong Jung,2,5,* and Damian Gruszka 1,*
1Institute of Biology, Biotechnology, and Environmental Protection, Faculty of Natural Sciences, University of Silesia, Jagiellonska 28, 40-032 Katowice, Poland
2Graduate School of Green-Bio Science & Crop Biotech Institute, Kyung Hee University, 1732 Deogyeong-daero, Giheung-gu, Yongin-si, Gyeonggi-do 17104, Republic of Korea
3Centre for Plant Genome Engineering, Institute of Plant Biochemistry, HeinrichHeine-University, D-40225 Duesseldorf, Germany
4Centre of Region Haná for Biotechnological and Agricultural Research, Czech Advanced Technology and Research Institute, Palacký University Olomouc, 783 71 Olomouc, Czech Republic
5Research Center for Plant Plasticity, Seoul National University, Seoul 08826, Republic of Korea
6These authors contributed equally to this work.
*Corresponding authors: correspondence to Ki-Hong Jung or Damian Gruszka
The clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)/CRISPR-associated protein 9 (Cas9) system has become the most important tool for targeted genome editing in many plant and animal species over the past decade. The CRISPR/Cas9 technology has also sparked a flood of applications and technical advancements in genome editing in the key cereal crops, including rice, wheat, maize, and barley. Here, we review advanced uses of CRISPR/Cas9 and derived systems in genome editing of cereal crops to enhance a variety of agronomically important features. We also highlight new technological advances for delivering preassembled Cas9-gRNA ribonucleoprotein (RNP)-editing systems, multiplex editing, gain-of-function strategies, the use of artificial intelligence (AI)-based tools, and combining CRISPR with novel speed breeding (SB) and vernalization strategies.