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Mol Cell Neurosci. 2003 Apr;22(4):430-40.

Tamoxifen-inducible glia-specific Cre mice for somatic mutagenesis in oligodendrocytes and Schwann cells.

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Institute of Cell Biology, Department of Biology, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, ETH Hönggerberg, Zürich, Switzerland.


Inducible transgenesis provides a valuable technique for the analysis of gene function in vivo. We report the generation and characterization of mouse lines carrying glia lineage-specific transgenes expressing an improved variant of the tamoxifen-inducible Cre recombinase, CreERT2, where the recombinase is fused to a mutated ligand binding domain of the human estrogen receptor. Using a PLP-CreERT2 transgene, we have generated mice that show specific inducible Cre function, as analyzed by cross-breeding experiments into the Rosa26 Cre-LacZ reporter line, in developing and adult Schwann cells, in mature myelinating oligodendrocytes, and in undifferentiated NG2-positive oligodendrocyte precursors in the adult. Using a P0Cx-CreERT2 transgene, we have also established mouse lines with inducible Cre function specifically in the Schwann cell lineage. These tamoxifen-inducible CreERT2 lines will allow detailed spatiotemporally controlled analysis of gene functions in loxP-based conditional mutant mice in both developing and adult Schwann cells and in the oligodendrocyte lineage.

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