The chicken B cell line DT40: a novel tool for gene disruption experiments

Institute of Molecular Biology, Øster Farimagsgade 2A, DK-1353, Copenhagen K, Denmark
Journal of Immunological Methods (Impact Factor: 2.01). 04/2001; 249(1-2):1-16. DOI: 10.1016/S0022-1759(00)00333-1

ABSTRACT The use of the chicken DT40 B cell line is increasing in popularity due to the ease with which it can be manipulated genetically. It offers a targeted to random DNA integration ratio of more than 1:2, by far exceeding that of any mammalian cell line. The facility with which knockout cell lines can be generated, combined with a short generation time, makes the DT40 cell line attractive for phenotype analysis of single and multiple gene disruptions. Advantage has been taken of this to investigate such diverse fields as B cell antigen receptor (BCR) signaling, cell cycle regulation, gene conversion and apoptosis. In this review, we give a historical introduction and a practical guide to the use of the DT40 cell line, along with an overview of the main topics being researched using the DT40 cell line as a model system. These topics include B cell-specific subjects such as B cell signaling and Ig rearrangement, and subjects common to all cell types such as apoptosis, histones, mRNA modification, chromosomal maintenance and DNA repair. Attention is in each case brought to peculiarities of the DT40 cell line that are of relevance for the subject. Novel applications of the cell line, e.g., as a vector for gene targeting of human chromosomes, are also discussed in this review.

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