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Nat Methods. 2011 Sep 11;8(10):853-9. doi: 10.1038/nmeth.1703.

Antiviral restriction factor transgenesis in the domestic cat.

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  • 1Department of Molecular Medicine, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Rochester, Minnesota, USA.


Studies of the domestic cat have contributed to many scientific advances, including the present understanding of the mammalian cerebral cortex. A practical capability for cat transgenesis is needed to realize the distinctive potential of research on this neurobehaviorally complex, accessible species for advancing human and feline health. For example, humans and cats are afflicted with pandemic AIDS lentiviruses that are susceptible to species-specific restriction factors. Here we introduced genes encoding such a factor, rhesus macaque TRIMCyp, and eGFP, into the cat germline. The method establishes gamete-targeted transgenesis for the first time in a carnivore. We observed uniformly transgenic outcomes, widespread expression, no mosaicism and no F1 silencing. TRIMCyp transgenic cat lymphocytes resisted feline immunodeficiency virus replication. This capability to experimentally manipulate the genome of an AIDS-susceptible species can be used to test the potential of restriction factors for HIV gene therapy and to build models of other infectious and noninfectious diseases.

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