A short history of guide RNAs

Part of Figure 1 from A. Schneider (2020) EMBO Reports. Figure used with permission of the author.

This week Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer Doudna receive the 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry "for the development of a method for genome editing" and in 2006 the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine was awarded to Andrew Fire and Craig Mello for “for their discovery of RNA interference – gene silencing by double-stranded RNA” . Both systems are being programmed by guide RNAs to their targets, but were these the two first systems with guide RNAs discovered?
Spoiler alert: No.
In a "Science & Society" essay in EMBO Reports entitled "A short history of guide RNAs The intricate path that led to the discovery of a basic biological concept" André Schneider gives his account of the discovery of the first guide RNAs.

Read the Essay in EMBO Reports

Website Schneider Lab