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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1985 Dec;82(24):8587-91.

Insertion of a bacterial gene into the mouse germ line using an infectious retrovirus vector.


Using a Moloney leukemia virus vector containing the bacterial neo gene, we demonstrate that retrovirus vectors can be used to introduce genes into the mouse germ line. Infection of preimplantation embryos with the vector MLV-NEO.1 resulted in integration of neo sequences in approximately equal to 10% of the progeny mice. One of these animals, mouse F.2, contained approximately six MLV-NEO.1 proviruses at independent integration sites, each present at less than a single copy per cell. This mosaic mouse transmitted one of these proviruses to her offspring, producing a line of transgenic mice carrying a full-length, unrearranged MLV.NEO.1 provirus at a single chromosomal integration site. Mice homozygous at this MLV-NEO.1 locus have also been produced. No expression of the neo gene has been detected in the transgenic mice, either by screening of primary bone marrow or lung cells for resistance to G418 or by RNA transfer blot analysis of RNA from several tissues. In addition, the neo gene was found to be extensively methylated in the transgenic mice; however, treatment of primary cells with 5-azacytidine did not induce G418 resistance. The inactivity of the MLV-NEO.1 provirus in transgenic mice and potential means of eliciting neo expression under these conditions are discussed.

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