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Nat Biotechnol. 2002 Apr;20(4):396-9.

Expression of exogenous protein in the egg white of transgenic chickens.

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AviGenics, Inc., Georgia BioBusiness Center, 111 Riverbend Rd., Athens, GA 30605, USA.


Using a replication-deficient retroviral vector based on the avian leukosis virus (ALV), we inserted into the chicken genome a transgene encoding a secreted protein, beta-lactamase, under the control of the ubiquitous cytomegalovirus (CMV) promoter. Biologically active beta-lactamase was secreted into the serum and egg white of four generations of transgenic chickens. The expression levels were similar in successive generations, and expression levels in the magnum of the oviduct were constant over at least 16 months in transgenic hens, indicating that the transgene was stable and not subject to silencing. These results support the potential of the hen as a bioreactor for the production of commercially valuable, biologically active proteins in egg white.

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