In vivo CRISPR screening identifies BAZ2 chromatin remodelers as druggable regulators of mammalian liver regeneration

Yuemeng Jia, Lin Li, Yu Hsuan Lin, Purva Gopal, Shunli Shen, Kejin Zhou, Xueliang Yu, Tripti Sharma, Yu Zhang, Daniel J. Siegwart, Joseph M. Ready, Hao Zhu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Identifying new pathways that regulate mammalian regeneration is challenging due to the paucity of in vivo screening approaches. We employed pooled CRISPR knockout and activation screening in the regenerating liver to evaluate 165 chromatin regulatory proteins. Both screens identified the imitation-SWI chromatin remodeling components Baz2a and Baz2b, not previously implicated in regeneration. In vivo sgRNA, siRNA, and knockout strategies against either paralog confirmed increased regeneration. Distinct BAZ2-specific bromodomain inhibitors, GSK2801 and BAZ2-ICR, resulted in accelerated liver healing after diverse injuries. Inhibitor-treated mice also exhibited improved healing in an inflammatory bowel disease model, suggesting multi-tissue applicability. Transcriptomics on regenerating livers showed increases in ribosomal and cell cycle mRNAs. Surprisingly, CRISPRa screening to define mechanisms showed that overproducing Rpl10a or Rpl24 was sufficient to drive regeneration, whereas Rpl24 haploinsufficiency was rate limiting for BAZ2 inhibition-mediated regeneration. The discovery of regenerative roles for imitation-SWI components provides immediate strategies to enhance tissue repair.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)372-385.e8
JournalCell Stem Cell
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 3 2022


  • bromodomain inhibitors
  • chromatin remodeling
  • colitis
  • hepatocyte proliferation
  • in vivo CRISPR screening
  • inflammatory bowel disease
  • liver regeneration
  • partial hepatectomy
  • protein synthesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Genetics
  • Cell Biology


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