Development of a BAC vector for integration-independent and tight regulation of transgenes in rodents via the Tet system.
ABSTRACT The establishment of functional transgenic mouse lines is often limited by problems caused by integration site effects on the expression construct. Similarly, tetracycline (Tet) controlled transcription units most commonly used for conditional transgene expression in mice are strongly influenced by their genomic surrounding. Using bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) technology in constitutive expression systems, it has been shown that integration site effects resulting in unwanted expression patterns can be largely eliminated. Here we describe a strategy to minimize unfavourable integration effects on conditional expression constructs based on a 75 kb genomic BAC fragment. This fragment was derived from a transgenic mouse line, termed LC-1, which carries the Tet-inducible genes luciferase and cre (Schönig et al. 2002). Animals of this mouse line have previously been shown to exhibit optimal expression properties in terms of tightness in the off state and the absolute level of induction, when mated to appropriate transactivator expressing mice. Here we report the cloning and identification of the transgenic LC-1 integration site which was subsequently inserted into a bacterial artificial chromosome. We demonstrate that this vector facilitates the efficient generation of transgenic mouse and rat lines, where the Tet-controlled expression unit is shielded from perturbations caused by the integration site.
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ABSTRACT: Regulatory elements that control tetracycline resistance in Escherichia coli were previously converted into highly specific transcription regulation systems that function in a wide variety of eukaryotic cells. One tetracycline repressor (TetR) mutant gave rise to rtTA, a tetracycline-controlled transactivator that requires doxycycline (Dox) for binding to tet operators and thus for the activation of P(tet) promoters. Despite the intriguing properties of rtTA, its use was limited, particularly in transgenic animals, because of its relatively inefficient inducibility by doxycycline in some organs, its instability, and its residual affinity to tetO in absence of Dox, leading to elevated background activities of the target promoter. To remove these limitations, we have mutagenized tTA DNA and selected in Saccharomyces cerevisiae for rtTA mutants with reduced basal activity and increased Dox sensitivity. Five new rtTAs were identified, of which two have greatly improved properties. The most promising new transactivator, rtTA2(S)-M2, functions at a 10-fold lower Dox concentration than rtTA, is more stable in eukaryotic cells, and causes no background expression in the absence of Dox. The coding sequences of the new reverse TetR mutants fused to minimal activation domains were optimized for expression in human cells and synthesized. The resulting transactivators allow stringent regulation of target genes over a range of 4 to 5 orders of magnitude in stably transfected HeLa cells. These rtTA versions combine tightness of expression control with a broad regulatory range, as previously shown for the widely applied tTA.Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 08/2000; 97(14):7963-8. · 9.74 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: To facilitate efficient allelic exchange of genetic information into a wild-type strain background, we improved upon and merged approaches using a temperature-sensitive plasmid and a counter-selectable marker in the chromosome. We first constructed intermediate strains of Escherichia coli K12 in which we replaced wild-type chromosomal sequences, at either the fimB-A or lacZ-A loci, with a newly constituted DNA cassette. The cassette consists of the sacB gene from Bacillus subtilis and the neomycin (kanamycin) resistance gene of Tn5, but, unlike another similar cassette, it lacks IS1 sequences. We found that sucrose sensitivity was highly dependent on incubation temperature and sodium chloride concentration. The DNA to be exchanged into the chromosome was first cloned into derivatives of plasmid pMAK705, a temperature-sensitive pSC101 replicon. The exchanges were carried out in two steps, first selecting for plasmid integration by standard techniques. In the second step, we grew the plasmid integrates under non-selective conditions at 42 degrees C, and then in the presence of sucrose at 30 degrees C, allowing positive selection for both plasmid excision and curing. Despite marked locus-specific strain differences in sucrose sensitivity and in the growth retardation due to the integrated plasmids, the protocol permitted highly efficient exchange of cloned DNA into either the fim or lac chromosomal loci. This procedure should allow the exchange of any DNA segment, in addition to the original or mutant allelic DNA, into any non-essential parts of the E. coli chromosome.Molecular Microbiology 07/1991; 5(6):1447-57. · 4.96 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Chromosomal position effects can influence strongly the transcription of foreign genes in transgenic animals. This results in low frequencies and levels of gene expression and, in some cases, in aberrant patterns of expression. Strategies for overcoming these effects are described with particular reference to their application in embryonic stem cells.Reproduction Fertility and Development 02/1994; 6(5):589-98. · 2.58 Impact Factor