© 2018 Elsevier Ltd Plant pathogens pose a major threat to crop productivity. Typically, phytopathogens exploit plants’ susceptibility (S) genes to facilitate their proliferation. Disrupting these S genes may interfere with the compatibility between the host and the pathogens and consequently provide broad-spectrum and durable disease resistance. In the past, genetic manipulation of such S genes has been shown to confer disease resistance in various economically important crops. Recent studies have accomplished this task in a transgene-free system using new genome editing tools, including clustered regularly interspaced palindromic repeats (CRISPR). In this Opinion article, we focus on the use of genome editing to target S genes for the development of transgene-free and durable disease-resistant crop varieties.