[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Targeted genome recombination has been applied in diverse research fields and has a wide range of possible applications. In particular, the discovery of specific loci in the genome that support robust and ubiquitous expression of integrated genes and the development of genome-editing technology have facilitated rapid advances in various scientific areas. In this study, we produced transgenic (TG) chickens that can induce recombinase-mediated gene cassette exchange (RMCE), one of the site-specific recombination technologies, and confirmed RMCE in TG chicken-derived cells. As a result, we established TG chicken lines that have, Flipase (Flp) recognition target (FRT) pairs in the chicken genome, mediated by piggyBac transposition. The transgene integration patterns were diverse in each TG chicken line, and the integration diversity resulted in diverse levels of expression of exogenous genes in each tissue of the TG chickens. In addition, the replaced gene cassette was expressed successfully and maintained by RMCE in the FRT predominant loci of TG chicken-derived cells. These results indicate that targeted genome recombination technology with RMCE could be adaptable to TG chicken models and that the technology would be applicable to specific gene regulation by cis-element insertion and customized expression of functional proteins at predicted levels without epigenetic influence.-Lee, H. J., Lee, H. C., Kim, Y. M., Hwang, Y. S., Park, Y. H., Park, T. S., Han, J. Y. Site-specific recombination in the chicken genome using Flipase recombinase-mediated cassette exchange.
Full-text · Article · Oct 2015 · The FASEB Journal
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) is an important technique in animal biotechnology for animal cloning and conservation of genetic resources, but has been a challenge for avian species. In the present study, we investigated the ability of cryopreserved quail spermatozoa to achieve fertilisation and embryo development. Female quail were killed 70-120 min after previous oviposition to collect unfertilised oocytes from the oviduct. Fresh or cryopreserved-thawed spermatozoa were injected into the cytoplasm of unfertilised oocytes, and the manipulated oocytes were incubated in quail surrogate eggshells. Injection of fresh spermatozoa supplemented with inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP3) resulted in a significantly increased rate of embryo development compared with injection of fresh spermatozoa alone (90% vs 13%, respectively). Although >80% of embryos stopped cell division and development before Hamburger and Hamilton (HH) Stage 3, approximately 15% of embryos from the fresh sperm injection developed to past HH Stage 4, and one embryo survived up to HH Stage 39 (11 days of incubation). In the case of cryopreserved spermatozoa, the embryo development rate was 30% after ICSI, and this increased significantly to 74% with IP3 supplementation. In conclusion, cryopreserved spermatozoa combined with ICSI followed by surrogate eggshell culture can develop quail embryos.
Full-text · Article · Jul 2015 · Reproduction Fertility and Development
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Germ cells are the only cell type in the body that can transfer genetic information to the next generation. Germline-competent stem cells can self-renew and contribute to the germ cell lineage giving rise to pluripotent stem cells under specific conditions. Hence far, studies on germline-competent stem cells have contributed to the generation of avian model systems and the conservation of avian genetic resources. In this review, we focus on previous studies on germline-competent stem cells from avian species, mainly chicken germline-competent stem cells, which have been well established and characterized. We discuss different sources of germline-competent stem cells and recent advances for the future applications in birds.
Full-text · Article · Feb 2015 · Asian Journal of Andrology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background
Genes, RNAs, and proteins play important roles during germline development. However, the functions of non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) on germline development remain unclear in avian species. Recent high-throughput techniques have identified several classes of ncRNAs, including micro RNAs (miRNAs), small-interfering RNAs (siRNAs), and PIWI-interacting RNAs (piRNAs). These ncRNAs are functionally important in the genome, however, the identification and annotation of ncRNAs in a genome is challenging. The aim of this study was to identify different types of small ncRNAs particularly piRNAs, and the role of piRNA pathway genes in the protection of chicken primordial germ cells (PGCs).
At first, we performed next-generation sequencing to identify ncRNAs in chicken PGCs, and we performed ab initio predictive analysis to identify putative piRNAs in PGCs. Then, we examined the expression of three repetitive sequence-linked piRNAs and 14 genic-transcript-linked piRNAs along with their linked genes using real-time PCR. All piRNAs and their linked genes were highly expressed in PGCs. Subsequently, we knocked down two known piRNA pathway genes of chicken, PIWI-like protein 1 (CIWI) and 2 (CILI), in PGCs using siRNAs. After knockdown of CIWI and CILI, we examined their effects on the expression of six putative piRNA-linked genes and DNA double-strand breakage in PGCs. The knockdown of CIWI and CILI upregulated chicken repetitive 1 (CR1) element and RAP2B, a member of RAS oncogene family, and increased DNA double-strand breakage in PGCs.
Our results increase the understanding of PGC-expressed piRNAs and the role of piRNA pathway genes in the protection of germ cells.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Genetically modified animals are used for industrial applications as well as scientific research, and studies on these animals contribute to a better understanding of biological mechanisms. Gene targeting techniques have been developed to edit specific gene loci in the genome, but the conventional strategy of homologous recombination with a gene-targeted vector has low efficiency and many technical complications. Here, we generated specific gene knockout chickens through the use of transcription activator-like effector nuclease (TALEN)-mediated gene targeting. In this study, we accomplished targeted knockout of the ovalbumin (OV) gene in the chicken primordial germ cells, and OV gene mutant offspring were generated through test-cross analysis. TALENs successfully induced nucleotide deletion mutations of ORF shifts, resulting in loss of chicken OV gene function. Our results demonstrate that the TALEN technique used in the chicken primordial germ cell line is a powerful strategy to create specific genome-edited chickens safely for practical applications.
Full-text · Article · Aug 2014 · Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The avian embryos have been used as a good model to study embryonic development. Due to its unique
development in the eggshell, avian embryos can be cultured and hatch in the surrogate eggshell system. In this study, we examined the viability, normal development and hatchability of Korean Oge (KO) chicken embryos in White Leghorn (WL) surrogate eggshells. Donor KO embryos at 3-day and 4-day-old were transferred into recipient WL eggshells, incubated for further 18 days at 37.5℃ with 70% of humidity until hatching. The viability of 3-day-old KO embryos at 7, 14 and 21 day in surrogate eggshell were 70.0%, 43.8% and 23.1%, respectively. In contrast, the viability of 4-day-old KO embryos at 7, 14 and 21 day in surrogate eggshells were 87.1%, 55.6% and 36.0%, respectively. The hatchability of KO embryos transferred into surrogate eggshells at 3-day-old was 23.1%, whereas embryos transferred at 4-day-old was 36.0%. Furthermore, the development of all viable embryos from 3-day group and 4-day group were normal. Our results suggested that culture of KO embryos in WL surrogate eggshells is highly possible, and transfer of donor embryos at 4-day-old may yield higher percentage of hatchability. This study may provide potential knowledge for the conservation of wild and endangered birds through surrogate system.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Germ cells are the only type of cell that can transmit all genomic information to the next generation. Such cells
have unique characteristics, being not only germline-competent but also serving as stem cells. In Caenorhabditis
elegans and Drosophila, germ cell lineages are predetermined. In contrast, in mammals, primordial germ cells, which are precursors of germ cells, are induced from multipotent epiblasts via extra-embryonic signaling. In avian species, however, the means by which germ cells are defined remain to be elucidated. Manipulation of germ cells is valuable in studies on germline development and in production of valuable cell lines. In birds, which lack germline-competent stem cells, genomic modulation of germ cells might serve to generate genetically modified poultry for both commercial applications and basic research.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This study was conducted to compare localization of transformed or differentiated cells after injection into developing chick embryos. Mesoderm-derived chicken embryonic fibroblasts (CEFs), retrieved from normal tissues and artificially transformed human embryonic kidney (HEK) 293 cells, were injected into the dorsal aorta of stage 17 embryos, incubated for 60 h, and post-injection survival and tissue localization after injection were monitored. Overall survival rates were 43% to 57%, and there was no significant difference between the two cell types (P=0.4453). Migration into various tissues was observed after injection of the HEK 293 cells, and this was greatly reduced after CEF transfer (P<0.0127). Tumorigenic activity was detected in the HEK 293 transferred cells and the major organ colonized was the highly vascularized yolk sac. From these results, we suggest that cell transformation alters post-injected migration activity of cells at organogenesis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This study was undertaken to elucidate detailed event of early embryogenesis in chicken embryos using a noninvasive egg retrieval technique before oviposition. White Leghorn intrauterine eggs were retrieved from 95 cyclic hens aged up to 54-56 weeks and morphogenetic observation was made under both bright field and fluorescent image in a time course manner. Differing from mammals, asymmetric cleavage to yield preblastodermal cells was observed throughout early embryogenesis. The first two divisions occurred synchronously and four polarized preblastodermal cells resulted after cruciform cleavage. Then, asynchronous cleavage continued in a radial manner and overall cell size in the initial cleavage region was smaller than that in the distal area. Numerous sperms were visible, regardless of zygotic nuclei formation. Condensed sperm heads were present mainly in the perivitelline space and cytoplasm, and rarely in the yolk region, while decondensed sperm heads were only visible in the yolk. In conclusion, apparent differences in sperm dynamics and early cleavage events compared with mammalian embryos were detected in chick embryo development, which demonstrated polarized cleavage with penetrating supernumerary sperm into multiple regions.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Primordial germ cells (PGCs) are the major population of cells in the developing bilateral embryonic gonads. Little is known about the cellular responses of PGCs after treatment with toxic chemicals such as busulfan during embryo development. In this study, we investigated the elimination, restorative ability, and cell cycle status of endogenous chicken PGCs after busulfan treatment.
Busulfan was emulsified in sesame oil by a dispersion-emulsifying system and injected into the chick blastoderm (embryonic stage X). Subsequently, we conducted flow cytometry analysis to evaluate changes in the PGC population and cell cycle status, and immunohistochemistry to examine the germ cell proliferation.
Results of flow cytometry and immunohistochemistry analyses after busulfan treatment showed that the proportion of male PGCs at embryonic day 9 and female PGCs at embryonic day 7 were increased by approximately 60% when compared with embryonic day 5.5. This result suggests the existence of a compensatory mechanism in PGCs in response to the cytotoxic effects of busulfan. Results of cell cycling analysis showed that the germ cells in the G0/G1 phase were significantly decreased, while S/G2/M-phase germ cells were significantly increased in the treatment group compared with the untreated control group in both 9-day-old male and female embryos. In addition, in the proliferation analysis with 5-ethynyl-2'-deoxyuridine (EdU) incorporation, we found that the proportion of EdU-positive cells among VASA homolog-positive cells in the 9-day embryonic gonads of the busulfan-treated group was significantly higher than in the control group.
We conclude that PGCs enter a restoration pathway by promoting their cell cycle after experiencing a cytotoxic effect.
Full-text · Article · Nov 2013 · Stem Cell Research & Therapy
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Glucose phosphate isomerase (GPI) involves in the reversible isomerization of glucose 6-phosphate to fructose 6-phosphate in glucose pathways. Since glucose metabolism is crucial for the proliferation and differentiation of embryonic stem and germ cells, reducing GPI expression may affect the characteristic features of these cells. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have been shown to regulate genes. In this study, we investigated the regulation of chicken GPI by its predicted miRNAs. We determined the expression patterns of seven GPI 3'-untranslated region (GPI 3'UTR) targeting miRNAs, including the gga-miR-302, gga-miR-106, gga-miR-17-5p and gga-miR-20 clusters in chicken primordial germ cells (PGCs) compared with GPI mRNA. Among the miRNAs, gga-miR-302b, gga-miR-302d and gga-miR-17-5p were expressed lower than the expression of GPI. Remaining four miRNAs were expressed higher than the expression of GPI. Then, we cotransfected four candidate miRNAs gga-miR-302b, gga-miR-106, gga-miR-17-5p and gga-miR-20a, respectively with GPI 3'UTR into 293FT cells by dual fluorescence reporter assay. Overexpression of gga-miR-302b and gga-miR-17-5p in 293FT cells significantly downregulated GPI expression, whereas the other two miRNAs had no effect. Then, knockdown and overexpression of these four candidate miRNAs were performed by RNA interference assay to regulate GPI in PGCs. In the RNA interference assay, the expression of GPI was greatly regulated by gga-miR-302b and gga-miR-17-5p. Finally, we examined the effects of GPI regulation on PGCs proliferation and migration. Our results suggested that the regulation of GPI by gga-miR-302b and gga-miR-17-5p affects PGCs proliferation. However, regulation of GPI using these two miRNAs does not affect the migration of PGCs into embryonic gonads.
Full-text · Article · Jul 2013 · Biology of Reproduction
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Germ cell differentiation in reverse-sexed reproductive organs and interspecies germ line chimeras provides insight into the mechanism of germ cell development and represents a useful tool for conservation of endangered birds. We investigated the migration and survival capacity of male chicken primordial germ cells (PGCs) in female chicken embryos and in quail and Korean ring-necked pheasant embryos of both sexes. Interestingly, the PGCs were successfully reintroduced in all cases. Furthermore, the cells survived in the recipient gonads until hatching regardless of sex and species of the recipient. In the case of male recipient chickens, PGC-derived offspring were produced. However, the reverse-sexed female chickens, quails and pheasants of both sexes did not generate any male donor PGC-derived progeny. These results suggest that migration and survival circuits in chicken PGCs are conserved in both sexes and between avian species during embryonic development.
Full-text · Article · Feb 2013 · Journal of Reproduction and Development
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The chicken was domesticated from Red Jungle Fowl over 8,000 years ago and became one of the major food sources worldwide. At present, the poultry industry is one of the largest industrial animal stocks in the world, and its economic scale is expanding significantly with increasing consumption. Additionally, since Aristotle used chicken eggs as a model to provide remarkable insights into how life begins, chickens have been used as invaluable and powerful experimental materials for studying embryo development, immune systems, biomedical processes, and hormonal regulation. Combined with advancements in efficient transgenic technology, avian models have become even more important than would have been expected.
Full-text · Article · Dec 2012 · General and Comparative Endocrinology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Over the past two decades numerous reports have demonstrated that the genetic modification of poultry genomes has great potential for improving poultry production; moreover, it may be used as a powerful tool for the production of industrial proteins. To date, transgenic techniques have been established for generating transgenic birds that express recombinant human proteins in hen eggs, as well as tissue-specific genes as an animal model. The production of transgenic birds is a promising approach that could have practical applications in agriculture and biopharmacology, in addition to advancing our understanding of avian biology. Finally, germ cell-mediated transgenesis could provide a more efficient strategy for creating gene-targeted insertions and deletions in avian species.
Full-text · Article · Oct 2012 · Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Transgenic birds embody one of the most potent and exciting research tools in biotechnology for agriculture, medicine, and model animals. To date, retrovirus- or lentivirus-mediated transgenesis has been established in chickens and quail. However, despite having a valid technique for viral transduction to achieve transgenic birds, many obstacles exist for practical applications because of relatively low and variable rates of germ-line transmission and transgenic offspring showing transgene silencing, as well as safety issues related to viral vector use. Thus, the generation of transgenic poultry by nonviral integration is a prerequisite for the introduction of biotechnology to practical applications. Herein, we show that a germ-line-competent chicken primordial germ-cell (PGC) line was established with high efficiency of transmission to offspring and that piggyBac transposition into PGCs improved the efficiency of transgenic chicken production and led to high-level transgene expression. GFP transgene-expressing donor PGC-transferred recipient chickens produced donor-derived progenies, and the germ-line transmission efficiency of donor PGCs was 95.2% on average. Subsequently, half of the donor-derived offspring (52.2%) were transgenic chicks because GFP-expressing donor PGCs, in which a transgene was inserted into one chromosome 20, were heterozygous. In all of the transgenic chickens, GFP expression was constant and strong, regardless of age. Our results demonstrate that piggyBac transposition into the chicken PGC line could be the surest way to generate transgenic chickens safely for practical applications.
Preview · Article · May 2012 · Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Chicken oviductal epithelium produces large quantities of egg white protein in daily cycles. In this study, we cultured and characterized oviductal epithelial cells (OECs) from juvenile (10-wk-old) chickens and from actively laying (30-wk-old) hens. The juvenile OECs were maintained over passage 25 and were positive for toluidine blue, lectin-ConA, HPA, UEA-1, WFA, WGA, anti-OVA, anti-ESR1, and anti-PGR, whereas the adult OECs were cultured over passage 6 and were positive for toluidine blue, periodic acid-Schiff, lectin-ConA, WFA, WGA, anti-OVA, anti-ESR1, and anti-PGR. To investigate the optimal concentration of steroid hormones for inducing egg white protein genes in vitro, we examined the effects of estrogen, diethylstilbestrol, progesterone, and corticosterone on OECs. Results showed that oviduct-specific levels of avidin, ovalbumin, ovomucin, lysozyme, ESR1, and PGR gene expression were significantly elevated in steroid hormone-treated OECs compared with those of untreated cells (P < 0.05). Ovalbumin protein was also secreted into culture medium from hormone-treated OECs. In addition, to examine the application of OECs for avian transgenesis, we introduced human thrombopoietin (THPO)-expressing lentiviral vector controlled by a 3.5-kb ovalbumin promoter into cultured OECs, and THPO expression was significantly induced with diethylstilbestrol or progesterone in juvenile OECs (P < 0.05) and in adult OECs (P < 0.05). In conclusion, these data demonstrate the potential of cultured OECs as a model system for providing a better understanding of the regulation of gene expression and for the production of an avian transgenic bioreactor.
Full-text · Article · Jun 2011 · Biology of Reproduction